The Concord Coalition, whose co-chairman is former U.S. senator Sam Nunn, is one of several organizations that have been backed Chambliss and his Democratic partner, Mark Warner of Virginia, in their attempts to forge a congressional consensus on the debt.
The group’s national political director was in the audience, ready with fulsome praise. “The 17 years I’ve been working on federal budget issues, I’ve never seen people quite like Mark Warner or Saxby Chambliss on this issue,” Smith said. “This is like being in that movie ‘Lincoln.’ I feel like I’m witnessing an ordinary senator evolve into something extraordinary. He didn’t have to do this.”