Louisiana delegation weighs in on raising debt ceiling

Local News

WASHINGTON D.C. (BRPROUD) — Congress is slated to pass a bill to raise the debt ceiling just hours before the country is set to default on its debts for the first time. Members of the Louisiana federal delegation have mixed feelings.

The Senate has already voted to raise the debt limit by $2.5 trillion and the House is expected to pass the legislation and send it to President Joe Biden’s desk Tuesday night. This will keep the country from default until 2023.

The reason the vote was allowed to happen was through a bill that let the debt ceiling be raised with a simple majority, meaning the Democrats could do it on their own.

“The nice thing about the debt ceiling being there is it required Democrats to specify how much they were going to spend,” Sen. Bill Cassidy said.

Some Republicans said the raise would allow Democrats to borrow more money for the Build Back Better bill which the Biden Administration is pushing to be passed before the end of the year. The Treasury Department said the default would have happened despite any new legislation this year.

“The reality is when we talk about the debt ceiling, this is not for new money. This is from money that has already been spent,” Rep. Troy Carter said. “This was money that was spent during the Trump administration.”

Another issue is the continued failure to create a year-long budget. The current budget is from the Trump administration. Earlier in the month, another stopgap bill was passed to keep the government funded until February. Senator Cassidy blames the Democrats for the delays.

“That can be directly related to all the energy that has gone into the Democrats’ tax and spend bill,” Sen. Cassidy said.

Congressman Carter believes it is due to bipartisan infighting. 

“We should be talking about what’s best for the American people and how we advance a solid economy,” Rep. Carter said.

In the stopgap bill, Congressman Garret Graves attempted to add amendments to bring more hurricane relief to Louisiana but they were denied. Senator Cassidy said with supplemental aid for Kentucky expected soon to help after the deadly tornadoes, that will be a chance for Louisiana to fight for more relief.

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