Washington, DC – Congressman Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore) gave the following statement today in a speech on the floor of the House of Representatives opposing a measure to increase the Federal Government’s debt ceiling by $800 billion. Under the measure, the Federal Government’s debt could balloon to as much as $8.2 trillion within the next year. A vote on the measure is expected late tonight.

“My Republican colleagues have spoken about a “mandate” for their fiscal policies coming out of the recent election. I didn’t hear a single Republican talk about increasing the debt during the campaign season. I didn’t hear them talk about reckless spending on programs for special interests, or divorcing the budget from reality.

“The fact is, the United States is incurring unnecessary debt for weapons that don’t add to our security, for handouts to special interests that don’t need them, and tax cuts for people who need them least. The Republican’s agenda would almost double our deficit problem over the next ten years. I for one cannot go back home to college campuses and high schools and look young students in the eye and say that I was a part of a plan that mortgaged their future.

“I long for the day when we have a bipartisan effort to reduce the deficit and to deal meaningfully with our spending priorities. But unless, and until, that happens, I will vote “no” to protest this bizarre divorce from fiscal reality that all of us are going to have to live with. These budgetary policies and practices are leading us down a path that we will regret for years to come.” 

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