Peterson Foundation Holds Fiscal Cliff Forum Today — Brings Together Lawmakers and Policy Experts to Discuss Solutions to Nation's Long-Term Fiscal Challenges

Nov 16, 2012


Participants in the forum, "Post-Election: The Fiscal Cliff and Beyond," include Former Federal Reserve Chairs Paul Volcker and Alan Greenspan, National Economic Council Director Gene Sperling, Congressman Chris Van Hollen, Congressman Peter Roskam & Fix The Debt Campaign Co-Founders Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles

WASHINGTON D.C. — As President Obama and Congressional leaders meet at the White House to discuss the impending fiscal cliff, the Peterson Foundation convened some of the country's most influential voices on fiscal and economic issues at a forum in Washington D.C.: Post-Election: The Fiscal Cliff and Beyond.

Featuring conversation and insight from Congressional leaders, two former Federal Reserve Chairmen and other leading policymakers, the forum focused on how to address the fiscal cliff in the context of America’s long-term fiscal and economic challenges. It also explored potential solutions developed by five ideologically diverse organizations as part of the Foundation’s Solutions Initiative.

"This is a critical moment for our nation," said Foundation Chairman, Pete Peterson. "The fiscal cliff is an opportunity for President Obama and Congressional leaders to bring the nation together with a bipartisan plan that can be implemented gradually, as the economy recovers. Passing such a plan would not only build confidence and boost the current recovery, but also put the nation on a sustainable fiscal path for the long term."

Solutions Initiative II

The Peterson Foundation provided grants to six leading think tanks in 2011 to develop comprehensive proposals to address the nation's long-term fiscal challenges. Their plans were presented at the Peterson Foundation's 2011 Fiscal Summit. At today's event, five organizations will present and discuss updated long-term budget plans as part of the second phase of the Solutions Initiative, including specific strategies for dealing with the fiscal cliff.

Plans by the American Action Forum, the Bipartisan Policy Center, the Center for American Progress, the Economic Policy Institute and The Heritage Foundation, while varying significantly in specific recommendations, were unanimous in their assessment that we must improve the nation's long-term fiscal path, and all of the plans made changes to avoid the policies implemented under the fiscal cliff.

To read a summary of the different plans, and access the full plans from each organization, click here.

Forum participants include:

  • Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson, Co-Founders, Fix The Debt Campaign
  • Martin Feldstein, George F. Baker Professor of Economics at Harvard University
  • Alan Greenspan, Former Chairman, U.S. Federal Reserve Board
  • Don Marron, Director, The Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center
  • Peter Orszag, Former Director, White House Office of Management and Budget
  • Representative Peter Roskam (R-IL), House Majority Chief Deputy Whip
  • Gene Sperling, Director, National Economic Council
  • Representative Chris Van Hollen (D-MD), Ranking Member, House Budget Committee
  • Paul Volcker, Former Chairman, U.S. Federal Reserve Board

Solutions Initiative II panel participants:

  • Josh Bivens, Research and Policy Director, Economic Policy Institute
  • Michael Ettlinger, Vice President for Economic Policy, Center for American Progress
  • Alison Acosta Fraser, Director, Thomas A. Roe Institute for Economic Policy Studies, The Heritage Foundation
  • Douglas Holtz-Eakin, President, American Action Forum
  • Alice Rivlin, Co-Chair of the Bipartisan Policy Center’s Debt Reduction Task Force

Event moderators include:

  • Ben White, Wall Street Correspondent, POLITICO
  • Peter Cook, Chief Washington Correspondent & Host of "Capitol Gains," Bloomberg Television

Click here for full biographies of all participants in Post-Election: The Fiscal Cliff and Beyond.

Click here to watch a live stream of the forum. You can also watch the live stream on Facebook.

About the Peter G. Peterson Foundation
The Peter G. Peterson Foundation is a non-profit, non-partisan organization established by Pete Peterson — businessman, philanthropist, and former U.S. Secretary of Commerce. The Foundation is dedicated to increasing public awareness of the nature and urgency of key long-term fiscal challenges threatening America's future and to accelerating action on them. To address these challenges successfully, we work to bring Americans together to find and implement sensible, long-term solutions that transcend age, party lines and ideological divides in order to achieve real results. To learn more, please visit

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