WASHINGTON -- Chairman of the Senate Budget Committee Kent Conrad (D-N.D.) said on Sunday that he urged President Obama not to publicly support a much-touted bipartisan debt-reduction plan out of fear that it would produce reflexive Republican opposition. Appearing on Fox News Sunday, Conrad beat back criticism of his party's approach to fiscal matters, saying it was inaccurate to accuse Congressional Democrats of not having passed a budget or not having adopted a serious approach to reducing the debt. Pressed as to why the president sat on the sidelines when the so-called Bowles-Simpson proposal was introduced, the North Dakota Democrat noted that proposal never would have seen the light of day had the White House not created the fiscal commission in the first place. He then revealed that he personally advised Obama not to back Bowles-Simpson -- which achieves trillions of dollars of debt reduction through a mix of spending cuts, tough entitlement reforms, and tax reforms -- out of fear that it would have been politically counter-productive. "He asked me for my advice," recalled Conrad. "I told him, 'Look, if you embrace the totality of Bowles-Simpson what will happen is the Republicans in the House will automatically be against it. You need to make the case for why it's necessary, but you need those of us in Congress to work it out.'" More... I sense a pattern emerging. OK, I heard a rumor that Obama supports SOPA and PIPA as well as CISPA.