Deficit panel meets with CBO and CRS

A working group of the presidential deficit-cutting commission met Wednesday for the first time with experts from the Congressional Budget Office and the Congressional Research Service to discuss ways to control the growth of discretionary spending, commission members said.

House Budget Committee Committee Chairman John Spratt, D-S.C., called it a "get-to-understand-the-problem meeting," adding that "we are developing a process as we go along."

Senate Majority Whip Rep. Dick Durbin, D-Ill., also attended, noting later "it remains to be seen" whether the group can reach consensus on its goal of reducing the deficit to 3 percent of gross domestic product by fiscal 2015.

The commission has three working groups, which are to meet every Wednesday except the weeks of full commission meetings. The panel also has sub-groups working on tax reform and mandatory spending.

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