Law grad named to key position on Washington budget panel

Mark Prater JD’84, the chief tax counsel for Republicans on the Senate Finance Committee, has been tapped as staff director for the federal budget “supercommittee” charged with suggesting $1.2 trillion in deficit cuts.

Prater was chosen by the supercommittee's co-chairs, Sen. Patty Murray, D-Wash., and Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas.In a joint statement, the co-chairs said Prater has “a well-earned reputation for being a workhorse who members of both parties have relied on. We look forward to working with him and are confident that his approach and expertise will be valuable as we weigh the difficult but necessary choices ahead."

Prater, a Portland native, played a key role in shepherding President George W. Bush’s tax cuts through the Senate Finance Committee in 2001. He practiced law before starting work with the Senate Finance Committee in 1990 and has worked for Republican committee chairs ever since.

“Mark is a superb choice,” said U.S. Sen. Ron Wyden, D-Ore. “He has a proven record of working for bipartisan solutions and his expertise on tax issues is unsurpassed among Congressional staff. Mark’s selection is an encouraging signal that the committee is serious about finding common ground and will consider tax reform as a component of its deficit reduction package.”

To read a profile written in 2005 about Prater, click here.