First of all, depending on which report you read, the Republicans on the supercommittee were willing to accept anywhere from $250 billion to $500 billion in additional revenue (translated as tax increases). But the Democrats wanted $1 trillion.
Secondly, the Democrats really didn't support any spending cuts. John Kerry, a member on the committee, admitted on MSNBC that the cuts the supercommittee Democrats were proposing were actually just a slowing of the rate of growth of government and not actual cuts.
Wes Pruden puts it this way:
If only there was no profound (insert word “partisan” here) and angry disagreement over how to find a detour from the road to financial oblivion. If only the Democrats would agree to cut the size of government. If only the Republicans would agree that big government is the answer. If only pigs could fly.And here's an interesting chart, especially for all of you out there still ranting "it's Bush's fault!"
But they can’t, and neither can the partisan divide be bridged by a pontoon, however well meaning the pontoon men may be. Money is only part of what the debate is fundamentally about. Big government, designed to grow ever bigger with the turning of the seasons, is what the modern Democratic Party is all about. The Democrats are committed to building a bigger trough. The Republicans are committed to dismantling troughs. It’s all in the DNA.
President Obama is not to blame. He is a true believer in the European model of the welfare state. Everybody who was listening learned that three years ago. The fact that the European welfare states are crashing is irrelevant to him; true believers are never rattled by facts, not even facts that slap them in the face like a cream pie. The opportunity to impose a failing welfare state on America is what drew him to the presidency in the first place. The congressional elections last year, the Republican rout that Mr. Obama rightly called a “shellacking” of his party, made no impression, either. The results were all about cutting taxes and dismantling government, but not to Mr. Obama. Those elections were merely a few pebbles in the road to Utopia.
Please note that the deficits, by fiscal year, don't include FY2011, in which the deficit was $1.3 trillion. Bush averaged $266.7 billion a year, while Obama's average is $1.33 trillion.