Special Interests Solicit Supercommittee
October 25, 2011 by Sam Rolley
As the 12-member budget supercommittee considers where the $1.2 trillion in deficit reduction cuts will be made before its looming Thanksgiving deadline, the members are being bombarded by concerned special interest and lobbying groups.
According to POLITICO, about 200 lobbyists representing businesses and groups have reported that they are talking to supercommittee members in an effort to protect funding ranging from healthcare to money allocated to Native American tribes.
According to the report, organizations related to the healthcare industry are currently leading the efforts with representatives from insurance companies and big pharmaceutical seeking to influence deficit reduction panel members. Representatives from the defense, education, telecommunications and transportation industries have also been attempting to reach the committee to talk taxes and benefits.
Many government insiders say that the deficit reduction team is offering very little information about what is being discussed in their talks, calling it “one of the most tightly lipped” special committees in decades. What information is known, POLITICO says, is not very reassuring. Both Republicans and Democrats understand the problems, but cannot reach many agreements as another U.S. credit downgrade looks evermore unavoidable.
Reports indicate that the supercommittee will likely focus heavily on taxes this week with discussions of an international tax bill. Some details of the proposal include a mandatory repatriation of corporate money overseas, and a separate provision that lowers corporate tax rates to 25 percent. Lobbying is expected to become more intense with the discussion of taxes.