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August 1, 2011


Words of wisdom on debt ceilings

by Deena Winter

From none other than U.S. Sen. Barack Obama, in 2006, when he was urging his colleagues not to approve an increase in the debt ceiling to $9 trillion (it’s now $14.3 trillion):

The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can’t pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies. … Increasing America’s debt weakens us domestically and internationally. Leadership means that “the buck stops here.” Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better.

According to USA Today, Obama’s spokesman said Obama was trying to make a point about President Bush’s need to get serious about fiscal discipline.

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11 Comments Post a comment
  1. Aug 1 2011

    At that time it was a protest vote because of Bushes wars. It was obvious that it would pass.

  2. Cynthia Johnson
    Aug 1 2011

    As Sen. Dick Durbin noted recently on the teevee . . . they all have played this game–or, more precisely, a variation of it. When the Repubs are in control, many Dems vote against raising the debt ceiling; when the Dems are in control, the Repubs do the same. Just because they can.

    The difference between all those times before and now, however, is that–as Durbin said–those voting against the increase in the past have always done so AFTER they’ve looked over their shoulder to make sure the increase is, in fact, going to pass. So their votes weren’t needed.

    So . . . we’ve gone from an annoying but harmless disingenuousness to a disturbing degree of disaster mongering. Not exactly progress.

  3. Aug 1 2011

    Deena, this type of “analysis” is the kind engaged in by the
    right-wing nuts. Things a new Senator said or the nondispositive
    things he does during his first year or two in the Senate have
    little to do with the situation Barack Obama faced this year. He
    did not threaten the full faith and credit of the United States,
    as the Republicans did. This talking point is a pathetic way to
    attempt to discredit a leader, and of course every single leader
    we have ever had has adapted his decisions to circumstances, even
    if they differ. This is pale gruel compared to the statements of
    Republican candidates like Romney and McCain, just limiting the
    comparison to sane Republicans.

    • ej
      Aug 2 2011

      Such spin. You make me dizzy. Nice try, though.

    • Roger C.
      Aug 2 2011

      Let me guess – he was young and foolish, correct?

    • Daniel
      Aug 4 2011

      So, we should forgive all his mistakes in his first few years as president too, cuz he’s a “new” president. You give him a lot of leeway that is clearly undeserved.

  4. Matthew Platte
    Aug 1 2011

    “…just limiting the comparison to sane Republicans” Hah! You slay me, sir!

  5. RBillW
    Aug 2 2011

    Try this. Say you make $50,000.00 a year and you go to the bank and say you want an additional $43,000.00 to handle your expenses this year and you want to do this for the next 10 years. You promise that you will reduce your $93,000.00 to $89,000.00 each year. First of all would you do that? Second what do you think the bankers reaction would be? Both parties need to step out of their insanity or we will have a chapter 7 bankrupcy rather than chapter 11.

  6. A Farmer
    Aug 2 2011

    How do any of these “elected officials” justify their actions and decisions within the parameters of the Constitution? If you, as the electorate, are blind to the left/right paradigm, you, sir, are getting your just desserts.

  7. Jane H Kinsey
    Aug 4 2011

    When the shoe on on the other foot, a perspective changes. Hopefully, voters can see the
    difference between spin and the truth. But then again, it needs to be pointed out to them.
    There is truth on both sides of the political spectrum but how does Obama justify his statements without pointing out this change in words? He is no leader. He is a political hack.
    He made little or no effort to lead the discussion but blamed the Republicans for the problem.
    Each side was stubborn but did he try to mediate? NO! A president should be above the fray.
    Even David Gergen said this.

  8. Dan Bretta
    Aug 4 2011

    Obama should have stuck to his original statements on the debt ceiling and the Republicans would have passed it without blinking an eye…in fact Obama should just do everything the GOP wants since they can’t vote with him on anything.


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