• Ga. Sen. Urges Plan As Deadline Looms Over Debt Ceiling


    ATLANTA,None - One late proposal to help end the debt showdown came Saturday afternoon from Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Georgia.

    He urged compromise, saying he's worried Congress is about to default on the country.

    Isakson surprised more than a few people with his proposal on the Senate floor, pleading with the divided Congress to find common ground.

    “Somewhere there is a silver bullet. The Lone Ranger had it, Tonto had it, Wyatt Earp had it, why can't the U.S. Congress find it?” Isakson said.

    Speaking from the floor of the Senate, Isakson brought in parts of both Democratic and Republican plans, saying the two sides in reality are closer than many people think.

    “We ought to be spending the next 24 hours finding out where our differences are and coming to find common ground, because we are not that far apart,” Isakson said.

    Political analyst Matt Towery said he hears some Democratic senators are considering the Isakson plan.

    “Does it have much traction yet or is it too early to tell? From what I'm being told, is it does have traction,” Towery said.

    Isakson’s plan allows for a future vote on the debt ceiling to be delayed until after the 2012 elections, which is what Democrats want, and gives Republicans a vote on a balanced budget amendment.

    A key component to the plan, Isakson suggests spending cuts take place automatically to make sure the debt limit doesn't expire before 2013.

    “I think he saw the opportunity to take the best of both programs and try to meet the concerns of both parties. Now, whether he's done that or not, it remains to be seen,” Towery said.

    “I would encourage all of us to forget now where we differ, to recognize where we agree, and then work on building a bridge on those differences,” Isakson said.

    The state Democratic Party said in a statement in response to the Isakson plan, “Sen. Isakson’s plan is an attempt to bring his fellow Republicans back from the brink after they have held the United States economy hostage to an increasing set of partisan demands. We appreciate any proposal to avoid fiscal ruin, and hope that the Georgia senator’s sincere offer is considered by those Republicans that have refused to put our country first.”

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