McKinley To Support Bipartisan Deficit-Cutting Agreement


Date: Aug. 1, 2011
Location: Washington, DC

Congressman David B. McKinley, P.E. (R-WV) issued the following statement in anticipation of tonight's likely vote to prevent America from defaulting on its obligations while guaranteeing at least $2.1 trillion in deficit reduction:

"The framework outlined by the White House and congressional leaders is certainly not perfect, but this is the right vote for West Virginia and our country," said McKinley. "This legislation guarantees at least $2.1 trillion in deficit reduction over the next decade, cuts spending more than it hikes the debt limit, shuts down President Obama's attempt to raise taxes, enforces statutory spending caps for ten years, advances the cause of the Balanced Budget Amendment, and protects Social Security and Medicare benefits for our seniors. Perhaps most importantly for the American economy, it avoids a job-killing default and most likely a devastating downgrade of our credit rating, as well.

"As our nation suffers from unprecedented unemployment and tremendous uncertainty, we are faced with a mountain of debt that is crushing our country. In January President Obama asked Congress for a blank check to raise the debt limit; we said no. Then he wanted to raise taxes; we said no. But after tough negotiations in which Republicans stuck to their principles, an agreement has emerged with which we can live. In fact, it marks significant progress.

"Cut, Cap and Balance was the best of the many plans presented over the past few months, and while this agreement falls short of that legislation, it is grounded in its principles. This bill cuts and caps spending and at least provides us with a much better chance of balancing the budget -- without tax hikes.

"Several months ago I voted against my own party's budget because it was not right for the seniors in my district who depend on Medicare. Indeed, our office has heard from thousands of senior citizens in northern West Virginia who were concerned that their benefits would be held hostage to the partisan bickering over the debt ceiling. I am pleased that this plan eliminates that fear by protecting Social Security and Medicare benefits. While ensuring the solvency of our entitlements will continue to be a topic of discussion in the months ahead, it must be done in a way that protects our seniors.

"This plan ensures significant spending cuts and reforms, as well as a clear path to more cuts in the future. All Americans are ready to move past this issue, do what's best for our country and focus on jobs. That's why I'm voting yes."