Senators Issue Letter to House GOP Colleagues in Opposition to Debt Limit Extension Bill
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today Republican Sens. Rand Paul, Mike Lee (Utah), Jim DeMint (S.C.), and David Vitter (La.) issued a Dear Colleague letter to their Republican House brethren, stating their opposition to tomorrow's House vote on the debt limit extension and urging them to stand in opposition as well.
Upon issuing the letter, Sen. Paul offered the following statement:
"Members of both chambers of Congress who wish to protect American taxpayers must stand together in opposition of the current debt 'deal.' Tomorrow the House of Representatives will have that opportunity, and I hope they will find the courage to do so.
"The 'deal' at hand would lead to an increase of our national debt over the next 10 years by at least $7 trillion, and the amount of 'cuts' introduced in the first year are a measly $7 billion. More so, it doesn't even balance the budget and all but guarantees a U.S. downgrade. There are so many things wrong with this legislation that will be passed on to the American taxpayer if enacted, the urgency of denying its passage is great."
July 26, 2011
We write you today in strong opposition to the Debt Limit extension you will be considering in the House tomorrow. For many reasons, we cannot support this bill and urge you to protect the American taxpayers by strongly opposing this bill.
1) The bill will lead to an increase of our national debt of at least $7 trillion in the next 10 years, assuming the maximum cuts in the bill actually materialize. Using less optimistic CBO numbers, new debt could easily approach $10 trillion.
2) The first year "cuts" are inadequate. The first year is the only really enforceable number without a Balanced Budget Amendment. The first year cuts are a paltry $7 billion.
3) The bill would clearly produce a downgrade to our AAA rating, as reported by multiple sources today. To raise the debt ceiling without adequate reforms would do more harm to our economy than not raising it at all.
4) The bill does not make specific cuts, so it is impossible to assess where the cuts will come from or whether they are gimmicks.
5) The budget never balances under this scenario.
6) The special committee process set up under this bill could fast track potential tax increases. Despite what some have said, there are no protections in the bill against tax increases.
7) The bill clearly does not fulfill the principles of "Cut, Cap and Balance". Saying that it does is a gross distortion and attempt to peel off votes of skeptical members.
There remains one way to raise the debt ceiling that can both solve our long term debt crisis and avert a short term down grade - passage of Cut Cap and Balance or similar legislation that specifically ties the debt limit increase to a BBA. We urge you to hold the line for real reform, to vote no on the Debt Limit extension, and to urge House leaders to stand up for taxpayers and our economic future.