A top GOP congressman is pouring cold water on the growing fears that a stalemate between Republicans and Democrats over the debt ceiling and sequestration will force the U.S. Government to default.
“The truth is America will pay its debts without a question,’’ Texas Rep. Kevin Brady tells Newsmax TV in an exclusive interview.
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“Regardless of what the date is, America will pay its debt and will not default. There’s no question about that.’’
Brady, who is chairman of the Joint Economic Committee, says the country has more than enough money to pay our debts, to make sure all of our bond holders are secured, and to fund the government.’’
But he said he was concerned over President Barack Obama’s vow not to agree to more cuts or short term fixes on the debt ceiling and his blaming Congress, specifically Republicans, for the latest fiscal showdown.
“He’s making it more difficult [to work with him] and probably for a reason,’’ Brady says.
“He saw great success in blaming Republicans for the fiscal cliff and so this is sort of more of those politics. At this point, the president’s being awfully melodramatic.’’
The 57-year-old lawmaker believes the commander-in-chief is hypocritical, especially after declaring in 2006, “The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure.’’
“Now he’s taking [it] back,’’ Brady says. “What strikes me is this no negotiating, no willingness to sit down approach that he’s taking.
“He wants a blank check to borrow more money but he doesn’t want any conditions on it to address the spending crisis we’re in. The American people don’t see it that way. Certainly they don’t in Texas.’’
Brady says the fiscal cliff deal earlier this month came after both legislatures “moved [Obama] aside’’ and worked with Vice President Joe Biden.
“That was the only way to have a reasonable discussion on here to sort of outside the politics. That can happen again,’’ he says.
Recently, the Fitch credit ratings agency warned that without a debt limit deal, the government’s credit rating may be downgraded. Speaker John Boehner also warns of a downgrade with spending cuts.
Whether a downgrade can be avoided at this point is a thorny question, Brady admits.
“The only way to avoid it is not only to agree on what areas need to be shrunk in the government within our discretionary areas,’’ he says.
“But what are the substantial reforms to save Social Security and Medicare, how do we make them sustainable in the long term? That’s what credit rating agencies are looking at and they should be because our economy is going to recover.
“The question is, are we going to have the backbone to tackle the big debt drivers in the future, and that’s all healthcare related for the most part.’’
On the issue of gun control, Brady says he is in agreement with Texas Rep. Steve Stockman on the potential of the president to use executive orders to implement new laws and sidestep Congress.
But he stops short of embracing Stockman’s threat of possible impeachment proceedings.
“Where I agree with Congressman Stockman is there’s some real concern about how far-reaching these executive orders will be and how they affect our second amendment rights,’’ Brady says.
“This president continues to bypass Congress using these executive orders. So that’s where my focus is going to be on. I know what impeachment does. I know how it basically distracts a nation from its biggest challenges.
“Right now, when I look at our economy how weak it is, when I look at this spending crisis we’re in and how we’re going to have to make tough decisions facing Social Security and Medicare, that’s where I want the 100 percent of our resources to be.’’
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