WASHINGTON -- The Senate has rejected a plan backed by President Obama to create a bipartisan task force to tackle the deficit this year.
The special deficit panel would have attempted to produce a plan combining tax cuts and spending curbs that would have been voted on after the midterm elections. But the plan garnered just 53 votes in the 100-member Senate, not enough because 60 votes were required. Anti-tax Republicans joined with Democrats wary of being railroaded into cutting Social Security and Medicare to reject the idea.
Obama endorsed the idea after being pressed by moderate Democrats. The proposal was an amendment to a $1.9 trillion hike in the government's ability to borrow to finance its operations.