U.S. Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis.

It is no secret that we think Ron Johnson is a sorry excuse for a senator. But the freshman Republican from Wisconsin is right about one thing.

Along with five other Republican senators, Johnson has called for the new joint congressional committee charged with finding $1.2 trillion in deficit reductions — the so-called supercommittee — to meet in public.

Echoing a call from House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., the group has asked Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., to ensure that all meetings of the supercommittee are noticed to the public, that the public be allowed to attend meetings, and that the meetings be broadcast live.

“We remain concerned that all aspects of the federal budget, including revenue increases, could be subject to the committee’s recommendations,” the six wrote. “If our colleagues wish to raise taxes or propose spending cuts, the American people have a right to see that process unfold.”

With regard to the committee’s mission, we have precisely opposite hopes from those expressed in recent months by Ron Johnson. A millionaire, he hopes to maintain the tax breaks that he enjoys while shifting more burden and expense onto working families. In particular, he favors devastating cuts in benefits now available to working families and retirees.

But we share Johnson’s view that any decisions made by this committee must be made in the public eye and with full transparency.

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