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Statement Of Congressman Richard Neal On Debt Ceiling Vote

August 2, 2011
Press Release

Votes against agreement that does not share responsibility equally

(WASHINGTON) Congressman Richard E. Neal, a senior member of the House Ways and Means Committee, released the following statement on the passage of the debt ceiling vote in the U.S. House of Representatives tonight:

"In the past month, I have voted to raise the debt ceiling twice because I did not want to see the United States default on its debt for the first time in history. The most recent occasion came on Saturday when I supported a responsible proposal to reduce spending offered by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid. But I did not vote for the latest plan because I simply do not believe the agreement reached last night is fair and balanced.

In this latest proposal there is no discussion of job creation; no plan to grow the economy; no relief for the millions of Americans who find themselves out-of-work through no fault of their own. The deal opens the door to future cuts in Social Security and Medicare; does not expedite the withdrawal of our troops from Iraq and Afghanistan; and puts future funding for education, hospitals and law enforcement at risk. In fact, the burden of the spending cuts falls squarely on the backs of the middle class and seniors.

A vote on raising the debt ceiling has never been held hostage by extreme ideologues that reject compromise and threaten to take our economy to the brink. But political partisans have been playing games with the full faith and credit of the United States of America. And in the process, damaging our reputation and standing around the world. That is why so many Americans are unhappy with the way this process has been conducted."