From ABC News’ Arlette Saenz:
ABC News has learned Andrew Stern will vote no on the deficit commission’s plan to reduce the national deficit by nearly $4 trillion. Mr. Stern, the former president of the SEIU, has informed co-chairmen Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson that he will be the fifth member voting no, ending the commission’s hopes of officially passing the plan to Congress. The commission needed votes from 14 of the 18 members in order to pass the plan to Congress.
Mr. Stern joins Sen. Max Baucus and Reps. Dave Camp, Paul Ryan and Jan Schakowsky in voting against the plan. He is also the only non-elected official to vote against the plan.
At Wednesday’s deficit commission meeting, Mr. Stern voiced concerns with the plan’s approach to addressing the tax system, health care, and future investments.
“I think the problem in Washington, too often, is that we're historians and not futurists. And unfortunately, as I said in the first meeting, we are at a very different moment of economic history,” Mr. Stern said in Wednesday’s meeting. “We are now witnessing what a global economy is and having to act in ways that we're not familiar with in our country to make strong, swift, decisive and fast decisions.”
“There is no reason, I think, as Congressman Hensarling said, that the president of the United States, the leaders of the House and the Senate cannot put a plan on the floor of their bodies this year. And we should keep voting and debating and amending until we have a plan, because it can't wait any longer.”