Former White House Chief of Staff and former University of North Carolina President Erskine Bowles and former U.S. Senator from Wyoming Alan Simpson, co-chairs of the bipartisan National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, spoke in Page Auditorium at Duke University on Wednesday, Jan. 18. UNC-TV was there to record the event in its entirety, which will be used to produce two special North Carolina Now programs that will be broadcast on UNC-TV Jan. 19 and 20 at 7:30 p.m.
The event, "Decision Time: Bowles, Simpson and the Federal Budget," is part of the Sanford School's Terry Sanford Distinguished Lecture series, which brings notable leaders to speak on Duke's campus.
Bowles and Simpson will discuss ideas for reining in the federal budget and restoring confidence in the economy. Philip Bennett, a Duke public policy professor and managing editor of the PBS series FRONTLINE, will moderate the discussion.
President Obama created the budget commission in February 2010 to identify policies to improve the nation's fiscal situation and to achieve fiscal sustainability over the long run. The commission was to propose recommendations to balance the budget by 2015 and to address the growth of entitlement spending and the gap between projected revenues and expenditures of the federal government.
The bipartisan commission included members from both parties from the U.S. House of Representatives and the Senate. Its recommendations failed to gain sufficient support and have not been implemented. Other federal fiscal reform attempts also have failed, most recently the "super committee."
The event is part of the Sanford School's series, "Gridlock: Can our System Address America's Biggest Problems?"
UNC-TV is North Carolina's statewide public television network.