Pelosi shies from Medicare, Social Security cuts

By ANDREW TAYLOR | October 27, 2011 | 12:00 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — The top Democrat in the House is keeping her distance from a deficit-cutting plan put forward by Senate Democrats that couples curbs in Medicare and Social Security benefits with tax revenue increases.

Rep. Nancy Pelosi also said that a GOP counter-offer that lacks tax revenues isn't bold or balanced enough.

The California Democrat made her comments after Republicans and Democrats on a deficit "supercommittee" swapped initial offers that left the two sides far apart despite weeks of secret talks.

The Republican offer would cut deficits by more than $2 trillion over a decade, according to officials in both parties. About one-third of that would come from increases in items such as Medicare premiums, the sale of public lands and airport fees — measures that increase government revenue without raising taxes.