Press Releases

“It will be unacceptable for the White House talks, or any talks, to produce a controversial decision at the 11th hour and for its passage to then be demanded in panic… Additionally, raising the debt ceiling should not be accompanied by tax hikes. A punishing tax increase would not only threaten needed growth, it would also give a free pass to the egregious overspending in Washington… Ultimately, $2 trillion is just the beginning of what we can and must cut to get our country back on a responsible path.”

WASHINGTON—U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions (R-AL), Ranking Member of the Senate Budget Committee, issued the following statement today after reports that House Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl were suspending their participation in the deficit reduction talks led by Vice President Biden:

“The House Majority Leader’s decision to withdraw from the negotiations over the debt ceiling for the time being, as well as press reports that Senator Kyl is doing the same, underscores the inherent problem with secret meetings instead of a public, open process. It also underscores that the president cannot ‘lead from behind’ in dealing with the most pressing crisis our nation faces—our exploding debt and the increasing damage it is doing to our economy.

It’s taking too long for a proposal to be presented, and it is clear now that optimistic statements about existing progress have been too generous. It will be unacceptable for the White House talks, or any talks, to produce a controversial decision at the 11th hour and for its passage to then be demanded in panic. Such an approach heightens the risk of failure.

Congress and the American people deserve a full opportunity to review and consider any debt limit deal that is struck behind closed doors. It has also been reported that some considered pursuing gimmicks to achieve the appearance of greater savings. That too is unacceptable. Any plan must be free of gimmicks and accounting tricks. It must be honest.

Additionally, raising the debt ceiling should not be accompanied by tax hikes. A punishing tax increase would not only threaten needed growth, it would also give a free pass to the egregious overspending in Washington—a behavior that is both morally and economically culpable for our current crisis. Federal government spending already controls nearly 25 percent of our economy and is on course to rise dramatically higher. Ultimately, $2 trillion is just the beginning of what we can and must cut to get our country back on a responsible path.”

###