Speaking on the Senate floor, Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., urged his colleagues to support the “Cut, Cap and Balance” plan being proposed in the GOP-controlled House of Representatives on Tuesday afternoon.
Backed by the Tea Party, the bill seeks to curb government spending by cutting spending by $111 billion and capping federal expenditures to 19.9% of the nation’s gross domestic output. The legislation also seeks to send a balanced-budget constitutional amendment to the states for ratification.
“Today, members of the House of Representative will have a chance to stand up and be counted,” McConnell said. “They’ll show with their votes whether they believe in freezing Washington’s current spending habits in place, and raising job-killing taxes or whether they believe, as I do, that the reckless spending and debt of the past two years has brought us to the point of crisis, and that something serious must be done to rein it without damaging a fragile economy with job-killing taxes. It’s that simple.”
It’s another option congressional leaders are mulling over to avoid a government default before the August 2 deadline. The measure is expected to pass the House, but has been given very little chance of passing the Democratic-controlled Senate. And President Barack Obama has vowed to veto the legislation if it reaches his desk and dismissed it as a political stunt.
According to Business Insider, the Office of Management and Budget said the bill would undercut the federal government’s core financial “commitments to seniors, middle-class families and the most vulnerable, while reducing our ability to invest in our future.”
A new NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll indicates the majority of Americans believe failing to raise the debt ceiling would be a serious problem. Other surveys have shown most Republicans aren’t that worried about the August 2 deadline.
From NBC’s First Read:
Fifty-five percent of all respondents — including 63 percent of Democrats, 59 percent of independents and 47 percent of Republicans — believe that not raising the ceiling would be problematic.
That’s compared with just 18 percent who say it wouldn’t be a real and serious problem. But that number jumps up to 33 percent among self-identified Tea Party supporters.