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Negotiators Vow to Achieve Budget Cuts

November 18, 1987|United Press International

WASHINGTON — Anti-deficit negotiators vowed today to beat their Friday deadline to produce a multibillion-dollar package of new taxes and spending cuts but warned that the plan may be "disappointing to anyone who would like to see something more dramatic."

Bargainers have not publicly discussed details of their 18 days of private talks, but they have indicated that the proposal before them would trim about $30 billion from the federal deficit in fiscal 1988, with about $10 billion of that sum coming from unspecified new taxes.

That $30 billion is larger than the $23 billion specified in the revised balanced budget law but smaller than many lawmakers had hoped for.

"We had a chance for beefsteak, and we ended up with gruel," Sen. Bob Packwood (R-Ore.) said.

"It is disappointing to anyone who would like to see something more dramatic achieved," Speaker Jim Wright (D-Tex.) said. "But it may be the only thing achievable."

Several negotiators said they could have agreed among themselves on a larger deficit reduction package, but they feared a more ambitious plan would have had trouble winning House and Senate approval.

Friday is the deadline for adoption of any deficit reduction package. Under law, if the package is not in place, $23 billion in automatic spending cuts will be ordered into effect to shrink the deficit.

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