“My understanding is he’s going to do all these things and not look at defense spending, not look at tax reform that would actually raise revenues,” the Virginia Democrat said on CNN’s “State of the Union.” “I don’t know how you get there without taking basically a meat ax to those programs who protect the most vulnerable in our country. ... I think the only way you’re going to really get there is if you put all of these things, including defense spending, including tax reform, as part of the overall package.”
The Gang of Six will put forth its plan “very shortly,” Warner said, and another member, Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin, told NBC’s “Meet the Press” to expect the bipartisan group to take a different approach.
“This group of six Senators — three Democrats and three Republicans — which I’ve been part of, we’re trying to come up with a bipartisan approach in the Senate to address the same issues that Paul Ryan addresses in his budget,” the Illinois Democrat said. “I think we’ll come at it differently. What we need to see is everything on the table and real balance. The idea of sparing the Pentagon from any savings, not imposing any new sacrifice on the wealthiest Americans, I think goes way too far. We’ve got to make certain that it’s a balanced approach and one that can be sustained over the next 10 years.”
National Republican Senatorial Committee Chairman John Cornyn, who appeared on “State of the Union” with Warner, accused Obama of failing to lead on spending reductions and charged some Democratic lawmakers, such as Senate Democratic Conference Vice Chairman Charles Schumer (N.Y.), with criticizing Republicans “for the proposals they’ve made, rather than trying to work in a constructive way.” Cornyn and Warner are both members of the Senate Budget Committee.
“The reason why Congressman Ryan is leading with this budget proposal is because the president refuses to lead, and so Republicans in the House are going to have to lead,” the Texas Republican said.
Vice President Joe Biden waits to conduct a mock swearing-in ceremony with Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, in the Capitol's Old Senate Chamber, December 2, 2014. Schatz was sworn in to serve the remainder of his term since he was appointed to the seat after Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, passed away.