Given that House Majority Leader John Boehner promised yet another government shutdown showdown over the next debt limit raise, it’s useful to review the historical record of Republicans on raising the debt limit:
This is very nearly criminal malfeasance on the GOP’s part. This is not about fiscal concern. They don’t give a flying leap about paying the debt. As Steny Hoyer points out, “Republicans are using the debt limit to achieve ideological goals, when raising it is the means by which the government pays off existing debt, most of which the country incurred under GOP rule last decade.”
It’s especially hypocritical because the GOP’s alleged great concern about debt doesn’t extend to tax cuts for the wealthy. Republicans don’t insist on equal spending cuts to pay for the lost revenue on those. Indeed they want to eliminate the tax burden for the filthy rich altogether.
Furthermore, as Sen. Chuck Schumer (D-NY) points out:
Republicans have no standing to demand a new debt limit deal after effectively violating last year’s.
“It is pretty galling for Speaker Boehner to be laying down demands for another debt ceiling agreement when he won’t even abide by the last one,” he said in a statement to reporters. “The last thing the country needs is a rerun of last summer’s debacle that nearly brought down our economy.”
Indeed, if Speaker Boehner proved anything in the last three and half years, it’s that his word is worthless. He has no influence over the extremist wing of his party and clearly doesn’t have the courage to stand up to them to advance responsible governance that serves the interest of all America.