A Portland native has been tapped as staff director of the Congressional budget supercommittee. Mark Prater is a capitol veteran with a reputation for tackling complex subjects.
Prater is a Willamette University law school graduate. He worked for Senator Bob Packwood, and gained experience as the Senator became the ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee.
Prater ultimately took a job with that committee.
In choosing Prater for the budget supercommittee, Senators Patty Murray and Congressman Jeb Hensarling were seeking a candidate with bi-partisan experience, and deep technical knowledge of budget matters.
Senator Ron Wyden praised the appointment, calling Prater's expertise "unsurpassed".
Prater told a Willamette University publication in 2005 that working for the Finance Committee, he still found occasional surprises in the job, despite the partisan nature of politics.
The supercommittee will work on a very short timeline, by Washington standards. Members meet in early September, and must have a plan ready for a Congressional vote December 23rd.