House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) tapped six Republicans on Friday to serve on President Barack Obama’s debt commission.
Budget ranking member Paul Ryan (Wis.), Ways and Means ranking member Dave Camp (Mich.) and Rep. Jeb Hensarling (Texas) will join Sens. Judd Gregg (N.H.), Mike Crapo (Idaho) and Tom Coburn (Okla.) as the Republican representatives to the debt commission.
Obama created the 18-member National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform last month through executive order after legislation creating the panel failed to pass the Senate.
The executive order stipulates that six commissioners be chosen by the White House and 12 members of the commission be appointed by Senate and House leaders — three members selected by the Republican and Democratic leaders in each chamber.
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) last month appointed Sens. Kent Conrad (D-N.D.), Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) to the panel.
Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) has yet to select three representatives for House Democrats.
“The Speaker is discussing with a number of Members who have expressed interest in serving on the commission because of the their commitment to fiscal responsibility,” said Nadeam Elshami, a Pelosi spokesman.
“The Speaker will make those appointments when she has completed those discussions.”
The panel, which will be led by former Sen. Alan Simpson (R-Wyo.) and former President Bill Clinton’s chief of staff, Erskine Bowles, is charged with making recommendations aimed at covering the cost of all federal programs by 2015 — or achieving deficits of about 3 percent of the gross domestic product. All recommendations are due to Congress by Dec. 1, 2010.
The bipartisan White House appointees include Ann Fudge, the former chairwoman and CEO of Young & Rubicam Brands; David Cote, chairman of Honeywell International; Alice Rivlin, a former Federal Reserve and Office of Management and Budget official; and Andrew Stern, president of Service Employees International Union.
Jennifer Bendery contributed to this report.