GOP's Coburn Bares Plan for Mass Cuts, $1T Tax Boost

Medicare, Pentagon on chopping block in plan to slice $9T in debt
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 19, 2011 1:19 AM CDT
Sen. Tom Coburn Unveils $9T 'Back in Black' Deficit Reduction Plan
Oklahoma Repbulican Sen. Tom Coburn reveals his "Back in Black" plan to reduce the federal deficit.   (J. Scott Applewhite)

One of the Senate's staunchest budget-cutters has unveiled a massive plan to cut the nation's deficit by $9 trillion over the coming decade, including $1 trillion in tax increases opposed by most of his fellow Republicans. Sen. Tom Coburn's plan is laced with politically perilous proposals—like raising to 70 the age at which people can claim their full Social Security benefits. It would cut farm subsidies, Medicare, student aid, housing subsidies for the poor, and funding for community development grants. It would also slash $1 trillion from the Pentagon's budget over a decade.

Coburn was a member of President Obama's fiscal commission, and voted for its plan to cut the budget by about $4 trillion over a decade. He recently dropped out of the closely watched "Gang of Six" senators seeking a bipartisan agreement to rein in deficits. "I have no doubt that both parties will criticize portions of this plan, and I welcome that debate," Coburn told reporters. "But it's not a legitimate criticism until you have a plan of your own." (More Tom Coburn stories.)

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