Rep. Grijalva: 'This Deal Trades Peoples’ Livelihoods For The Votes Of A Few Unappeasable Right-wing Radicals': UPDATE 1,2,3,4,5
There's an outcry coming from Progressives at this point, including myself and any way you look at it, John Boehner will need Democratic votes to get something done in the HOUSE.
Rep. Raul Grijalva, co-chair of the Congressional Progressive Caucus, today released the following statement on the emerging debt deal via email:
“This deal trades peoples’ livelihoods for the votes of a few unappeasable right-wing radicals, and I will not support it. Progressives have been organizing for months to oppose any scheme that cuts Medicare, Medicaid or Social Security, and it now seems clear that even these bedrock pillars of the American success story are on the chopping block. Even if this deal were not as bad as it is, this would be enough for me to fight against its passage. This deal does not even attempt to strike a balance between more cuts for the working people of America and a fairer contribution from millionaires and corporations. The very wealthy will continue to receive taxpayer handouts, and corporations will keep their expensive federal giveaways. Meanwhile, millions of families unfairly lose more in this deal than they have already lost. I will not be a part of it. Republicans have succeeded in imposing their vision of a country without real economic hope. Their message has no public appeal, and Democrats have had every opportunity to stand firm in the face of their irrational demands. Progressives have been rallying support for the successful government programs that have meant health and economic security to generations of our people. Today we, and everyone we have worked to speak for and fight for, were thrown under the bus. We have made our bottom line clear for months: a final deal must strike a balance between cuts and revenue, and must not put all the burden on the working people of this country. This deal fails those tests and many more. The Democratic Party, no less than the Republican Party, is at a very serious crossroads at this moment.
For decades Democrats have stood for a capable, meaningful government – a government that works for the people, not just the powerful, and that represents everyone fairly and equally. This deal weakens the Democratic Party as badly as it weakens the country. We have given much and received nothing in return. The lesson today is that Republicans can hold their breath long enough to get what they want. While I believe the country will not reward them for this in the long run, the damage has already been done. A clean debt ceiling vote was the obvious way out of this, and many House Democrats have been saying so. Had that vote failed, the president should have exercised his Fourteenth Amendment responsibilities and ended this manufactured crisis. This deal is a cure as bad as the disease. I reject it, and the American people reject it. The only thing left to do now is repair the damage as soon as possible.”
"We urge the White House and all in Congress to keep negotiating for a deal that protects Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid and asks millionaires to pay their fair share,"
UPDATE I: Dick Durbin agrees with me and says that this debt ceiling vote is killing Keynesian economics.
UPDATE II: Sam Stein: Harry Reid Tentatively Signs Off On Debt Ceiling Deal
UPDATE III: CNN's Money says that spending cuts now are not good for the economy:
NEW YORK (CNNMoney) -- If the debt ceiling goes up, government spending is most likely going down. And with the economy grinding to a halt, the timing couldn't be worse...read on
UPDATE IV: Greg Sargent is shrill.
UPDATE V: And as I figured, Boehner's trying to reduce defense spending cuts in the deal:
House Speaker John A. Boehner was attempting to scale back the $350 billion in immediate Pentagon cuts that would be included in the initial $1 trillion in spending cuts. Democrats said Mr. Boehner was also trying to minimize the amount of automatic cuts to defense spending that would occur if a special congressional committee was unable to reach a broader agreement later this year.