Washington, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Barbara Lee (D-CA) released the following statement in opposition to the debt ceiling deal released on Sunday night:
“Of course, I don’t want to see our nation default, but after having reviewed this deal in detail, for a number of reasons, I am simply unable to support it.
“First, it totally fails to address the urgent and most pressing crisis in the country: the lack of jobs and economic growth. At a time when investments are needed to jump start our economy and put people back to work, I believe this deal and its cuts-only approach is the wrong approach. Clearly, allowing the false link between the debt ceiling and the deficit to gain any credibility was a mistake. And it is an outrage that we stand here today. A clean debt ceiling vote and a reasonable and balanced approach to deficit reduction is what has long been required.
“Second, while I can appreciate that some provisions to limit the impact of the cuts were included, the bill falls short of achieving the balance necessary. The hard reality is that cuts of this size will likely result in massive cuts to vital human needs and safety net programs and will cripple our ability to help our must vulnerable communities, including seniors, the poor, and low income people who are struggling every day to just get by. And it includes no revenues and no guarantee of revenues going forward.
“With over forty five million people living in poverty and the wealth gap at astronomical levels, we must demand that the super rich, big oil and other big corporations that enjoy tax giveaways and loopholes also contribute to deficit reduction.
“Finally, it is entirely unacceptable to me that this deal would open the door to cuts in Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. Enough is enough. We cannot allow the extreme Tea Party Republicans to advance their agenda to dismantle our government by rewarding their extreme tactics with this bad deal. I continue to support the President using the 14th amendment if necessary to raise the debt ceiling.”