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Bowles calls for balanced approach to national debt PDF Print E-mail
Federal Government
Monday, 19 September 2011 01:00

CHAPEL HILL -- Former UNC System president Erskine Bowles says Congress will have to take a balanced approach to get the national debt under control.

Bowles said lawmakers must reduce the deficit by at least $4 trillion over the next decade in order to stabilize the debt. He said if no action is taken, the country will responsible for more than $1 trillion in annual interest payments by 2020.

"That’s one trillion dollars we will spend in Asia to educate their kids, to build their infrastructure, and make it more probable that the jobs of the future will be over there, and not here," Bowles said during a recent speech at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

Bowles, who also co-chaired a debt reduction commission appointed by President Obama, called for an approach that goes far beyond the $1.5 trillion goal that Congress tasked the Joint Committee on Deficit Reduction with cutting by Thanksgiving. He said federal spending is on a path that’s not sustainable.

“We can’t just tax our way out, we can’t just grow our way out, and I’m here to tell you this Congress has proved that we can’t just cut our way out,” Bowles added.

President Obama will release his plan to reduce the deficit by $4 trillion over the next years in a speech Monday. The proposal is expected to include enough money to cover the cost of his jobs bill, some adjustments to Medicare and Medicaid benefits along with a tax increase for corporations and individuals making more than $1 million a year.

Listen to Erskine Bowles’ speech on reducing the national deficit:

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