Bakersfield Observed: Special Report: McCarthy Lashes Out At Senate, President For Lack Of Leadership During The Debt Crisis
As the debt debate raged on this week, frustration mounted across America. I'm frustrated too. Here's what I can tell you: my colleagues and I have been committed from day one to addressing our debt and spending problem head-on, with no gimmicks and with the facts. And just like we have done on spending cuts, regulatory reforms and energy independence efforts, we have led in this debate. We have offered solutions and voted for those solutions.
The August 2nd deadline to raise the debt ceiling was made clear months ago, and we sat down with the President and Democrats to begin discussions. We came to the table and offered ideas in good faith. However, the President continued to insist on increasing taxes on America's families and small businesses. I don't need to tell you that this is a bad idea. Just today, we found out that our nation grew by just 1.3 percent in the second quarter – less than economists projected – and growth in the first quarter was revised downward.
Our economy is clearly still struggling, and tax increases would only hurt more. Since the President refused to lead, my colleagues and I studied our budget and the spending causing our perpetual deficits and came up with a plan to ensure our nation can continue to pay our bills without raising taxes and that puts us on a path to long-term fiscal stability. In fact, we came up with two plans.
First, we drafted the Cut, Cap and Balance Act, which I highlighted here last week. This serious legislation would have raised the debt limit only after fundamentally altering the way Washington spends. Cut, Cap and Balance passed the House with bipartisan support, but the Senate refused to even take it up for a vote. So, in our continued effort to ensure that our nation can avoid a default and a potential downgrade in our credit rating, we went back to work and used the principles of Cut, Cap, and Balance to produce the Budget Control Act of 2011. We know this is not a perfect plan, but it cuts billions more than it increases the debt limit, it doesn't raise taxes and it doesn't give the President a blank check to pay for Washington's spending binge since 2009.
Whether you agree with these plans or not, there is no question that these are detailed legislative solutions to address the debt ceiling and the Washington culture of overspending. Unfortunately, the President has continued to refuse to put out a detailed plan on paper and the Senate has continued to abdicate its responsibility; refusing to even debate our proposals, refusing to produce alternative legislation of their own and even refusing to pass a budget this year. In times of crisis, Americans expect all of their representatives to step up, and we couldn't agree more. My colleagues and I have led the way and remain ready and willing to work with the President and Senate Democrats to resolve this debt crisis.