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Congressman Gene Green

Representing the 29th District of Texas

Rep. Green Speaks Out about the Federal Deficit

July 22, 2011
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – Today Rep. Green released a statement on negotiations between the White House and Congressional leadership’s attempts to forge a compromise on balancing the federal budget and increasing the national debt limit:

“Focusing on balancing our budget is critical but until we can accomplish this we cannot allow our country to default on our financial obligations.  The consequences would be devastating for our economy.  Any increase in the debt ceiling should go hand in hand with deficit reduction and I am determined to work with my colleagues to accomplish this, but I have been disappointed in the gamesmanship that has accompanied this debate.  

I do not want to increase taxes on anyone, but our country is facing very real financial challenges and at a time when tax rates are near historic lows, changes to the tax code should not be taken off the table without serious discussion and analysis.  

I will not under any circumstances support any solutions that involve massive cuts to Medicare and Social Security.  These benefits have been earned by hardworking Americans and payment of these benefits has not increased the federal deficit.  Any measures that would gut Medicare in order to continue tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans are backwards and unacceptable.  

The last time the debt ceiling was increased, the Democratic leadership in Congress insisted on including PAYGO provisions, which required that all new policies reducing revenues or expanding spending be offset over five and ten years.  This is the same rule that was in place when we moved from record deficits to record surpluses in the 1990s.  

I hope that under the new leadership in the House of Representatives, they pursue a similar agenda of fiscal discipline but until then, we need our Administration and Congressional leaders to focus on avoiding a default by the federal government since it would have dire consequences for our nation.”