In a weekend session in the upper chamber, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) slammed Republicans for blocking Democrats’ attempt to extend the debt limit beyond midterm elections in 2014, charging that the GOP is responsible for the national debt.
The Democrats’ proposal that would have increased the national debt by $1.1 trillion failed to pass the 60-vote threshold needed in its cloture vote. The vote was 53-45.
As the Oct. 17 debt ceiling deadline approaches, centrist Republicans in the upper chamber have proposed an extension of the debt ceiling until January.
“No one denies that this nation has work to do to reduce its debt. But Republicans who say this country should default on its debt today are the same Republicans who ran up that debt a few short years ago,” Reid railed on the Senate floor Sunday.
“These Republicans charged more than $4 trillion in tax breaks for the rich on the American taxpayers’ credit card. They paid for two wars, to the tune of $2 trillion, with borrowed money. And they rang up a $400 billion tab for a Medicare prescription drug plan,” he continued. “These Republican spendthrifts ran up the nation’s credit card for years. Yet every single Senate Republican refused yesterday to even talk about paying the bill now that it’s due. This is the height of irresponsibility.”
“Americans want Congress to compromise. Americans want Congress to give the economy certainty and security, not more indecision and doubt. Americans want Congress to do its job. Americans want Congress to reopen the government, take the threat of default off the table and sit down to talk about a long-term budget deal that creates jobs and strengthens the middle class.”
Reid said he met with Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on both Saturday and Sunday.