Sept. 21, 2014 SIGN IN | REGISTER

Detroit's Woes Put New Spotlight on Pension Overhaul Proposals

Douglas Graham/CQ Roll Call File Photo
Hatch and other conservatives point to the case of Detroit and a spate of similar, if smaller, bankruptcy filings as harbingers of wider trouble.

Hatch said he was working to build support for his plan to allow states greater flexibility and make clear there is little appetite in Congress for bailouts. “It would go a long way to solving the problems of state and local government,” he said.

The top GOP tax writer said he hoped to move his proposal as a stand-alone bill but also would look for other vehicles. “It could be attached to anything,” he said.

Rep. Mick Mulvaney, R-S.C., a Financial Services Committee member, said Republicans likely would weigh legislation and pursue oversight proceedings to prevent bailouts. “My biggest fear is that the Federal Reserve tries to do things on its own,” Mulvaney said.

Rep. Steve Scalise of Louisiana, chairman of the Republican Study Committee, said addressing pension problems now would head off the kind of bailouts provided to Wall Street firms and automobile companies.

“We’ve got more than enough problems of our own that we need to fix. We sure don’t need to be bailing out states. They need to fix their own problems,” Scalise said.

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