Erskine Bowles and Alan Simpson, co-chairs of the bipartisan National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, will speak in Page Auditorium at Duke University on Wednesday, January 18 at 5:30 pm.


UPDATE: Tickets to this event have now sold out. Please catch the presentation live via Duke’s Ustream channel live from 5:30-7:00 pm on Wednesday evening:

You may also view an edited version on UNC TV's North Carolina NOW on Thursday, January 19, at 7:30pm (part 1) and Friday, January 20 (Part 2).)


The event, “Decision Time: Bowles, Simpson and the Federal Budget,” is free and open to the public. It is part of the Sanford School’s Terry Sanford Distinguished Lecture series, which brings notable leaders to speak on Duke’s campus. 

Bowles, former White House Chief of Staff and president of the UNC system, and Simpson, former U.S. Senator from Wyoming, will discuss ideas for reining in the federal budget and restoring confidence.

Philip Bennett, Sanford School of Public Policy professor and managing editor of the PBS show “Frontline,” will moderate the discussion.

President Obama created the budget commission in February 2010 to identify policies to improve the nation’s fiscal situation in the medium term 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 a 2012 Terry Sanford Distinguished Lecture and part of the Sanford School of Public Policy’s series, “Gridlock: Can our System Address America's Biggest Problems?” The event is free, but tickets are required and available through the Duke Box Office online or by calling (919) 684-4444.