The proposal was not aired publicly, but sources indicated that it would combine spending cuts to the Medicare and Medicaid programs with higher taxes on the wealthy. Those familiar with the presentation differed on its ratio of spending cuts to new taxes, with some saying it relied more heavily on tax revenue.
The $500 billion it would cut from Medicare and Medicaid picked up where the summer's negotiations left off. It proposes $400 billion in Medicare cuts equally divided between beneficiaries and providers, and up to $80 billion in cuts to Medicaid.
Revenue would be raised mostly by bumping up the high-end tax bracket and limiting deductions for upper-income earners, those familiar with the talks said.
The Democrats' plan also included using interest savings to pay for elements of Obama's $447-billion jobs proposal, an idea Republicans have shot down.
The "super committee" has until Nov. 23 to reach agreement on a proposal to reduce the nation's deficits by at least $1.5 trillion over the next decade. Failure to cut at least $1.2 trillion would trigger mandatory cuts in 2013 that many are skeptical would ever take place.
Leading credit agencies have indicated that they want to see a serious effort to rein in the nation's debt load or the country risks having its once-stellar credit rating further downgraded, which would probably increase interest rates for ordinary Americans.