Congressional Leaders Take to Op-Eds after Super Committee Fail

Now that the Super Committee has failed, the blame game begins, and politicians from both sides of the aisle took to the opinion pages on Tuesday to point fingers amid growing frustration with Washington.

"I did everything possible," House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said in USA Today of his efforts to encourage the deficit-reduction committee to produce an economic plan. "The so-called Super Committee was unable to reach agreement because President Obama and Washington Democrats insisted on dramatic tax hikes on American job creators, which would make our economy worse."

Boehner said that Democrats rejected the GOP's tax reform proposals because they didn't include tax hikes.

But Senator Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., told a different story in a dueling op-ed in USA Today, saying that the committee stalled because Republicans refused to budge on revenue.

"Democrats were prepared to strike a grand bargain that would make painful cuts while asking millionaires to pay their fair share, and we put our willingness on paper," he said. "But Republicans never came close to meeting us halfway."

Reid also blamed extremists groups for the gridlock.

"I am disappointed that Republicans never found the courage to ignore Tea Party extremists and millionaire lobbyists such as Grover Norquist," he said, "and listen instead to the millions of Americans - including the vast majority of Republicans - who want a balanced approach to deficit reduction."

Neither Boehner or Reid actually sat on the committee, but Super Committee member Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas, took to the pages of the Wall Street Journal to explain his side.

"We regrettably missed a historic opportunity to lift the burden of debt and help spur economic growth and job creation," he said. "Americans deserve an explanation."

Hensarling said the committee stalled not only on tax hikes, but also on entitlement reform.

The Democrats "were unwilling to agree to anything less than $1 trillion in tax hikes-and unwilling to offer any structural reforms to put our health-care entitlements on a permanently sustainable basis," he said.

Hensarling also pointed the finger at the president.

"Unfortunately, the committee's challenge was made more difficult by President Obama," he wrote. "Since the committee was formed, he has demanded more stimulus spending and issued a veto threat against any proposed committee solution to the spending problem that was not coupled with a massive tax increase."

In the end, Hensarling said, the committee failed because its members simply couldn't "bridge the gap" between two radically different approaches to governing.