Federal Budget
8:44 am
Wed December 11, 2013

Sen. Coburn Calls Budget Deal "Patch Work"

A leading congressional deficit hawk says a bipartisan budget agreement hammered out on Capitol Hill is mostly a patch-work approach that fails to address wasteful spending that is contributing to a ballooning federal debt.

Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) greeting President Barack Obama.
Credit Tom Coburn / Facebook

Republican Sen. Tom Coburn of Oklahoma says the accord announced by GOP Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin and Democratic Sen. Patty Murray of Washington state likely was the best that could be achieved, but says he can't support it.

Oklahoma 4th District Congressman Tom Cole says he expects opposition to the agreement. But he told CNBC early Wednesday the plan could help Washington get off "high center" to work on other issues.

The political accommodation would restore some $63 billion in automatic spending cuts. Coburn tells MSNBC in an interview Wednesday that it doesn't go far enough toward genuine deficit reduction and doesn't attack duplication in federal programs. He says, for instance, there are 47 separate federal job-training programs, costing about $31 billion a year, which duplicate each other.

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