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McConnell: Dems dodging entitlement reform

May 20, 2012 at 2:55 PM   |   Comments

WASHINGTON, May 20 (UPI) -- Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell said the Democrats had wasted an opportunity to make serious reforms to entitlement spending in the past year.

McConnell, R-Ky., said Congress should stick to its commitments to take an ax to expenditures rather than rubber-stamp raising the debt ceiling again this summer.

The Obama administration and its allies in Congress effectively double-crossed the Republican leadership by refusing to sit down for serious discussions about the 400-pound entitlement gorilla after the GOP compromised on new revenues, McConnell contended on CBS' "Face the Nation."

"We got nothing in return about the long-term debt problem facing this country, and we all know that it's on the entitlement side," McConnell said. "So at some point here, this president needs to become the adult, because the speaker and I have been the adults in the room, arguing that we ought to do something about the nation's most serious long- term problem."

Sen. Mark Warner, D-Va., defended President Obama's efforts to reform entitlements and the tax code, and warned that Republican goals of reducing domestic spending to 5 percent of the budget would lead to eroding confidence in the financial markets and leave the United States unable to support economic growth.

"I don't know any nation in the world that can compete in the 21st century if they spend less than 5 percent of their dollars educating their workforce, building their infrastructure, and creating the research and development that's going to create intellectual capital," said Warner. "There is no other country in the world that would have that kind of plan."

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