The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

Opinion

January 11, 2013

Debt ceiling increase must be met with spending cuts

ENID, Okla. — When Congress approved legislation on the so-called “fiscal cliff,” the nonpartisan Concord Coalition deemed the deal a “political punt.”

Devoid of hard choices, the agreement didn’t address the statutory debt limit.

“It still looms as the next self-imposed crisis to remind everyone of how dysfunctional the legislative process has become on Capitol Hill,” Concord Coalition Executive Director Robert L. Bixby said.

Here are the basics on the debt ceiling, the congressional cap set on what the government borrows that includes public and intragovernmental debt: More spending and tax cuts increase the country’s borrowing. Raising it allows the Treasury Department to pay its congressionally approved obligations, according to CNN.

President Obama insists he won’t negotiate with Congress over raising the nation’s borrowing limit. We think stubbornly refusing to negotiate is not a realistic tactic.

Sequestration is coming next, with more squabbling over pet projects. Washington leaders deferred $1.2 trillion in spending cuts, giving the Pentagon and domestic programs temporary reprieve.

For the record, Obama has fully flopped on the debt ceiling since 2006, according to PolitiFact. As a senator, he voted against raising it, but now regrets the decision.

According to the Congressional Research Service, our debt limit has increased 76 times in the last half century. It reportedly was raised 18 times under President Ronald Reagan, seven times during George W. Bush’s presidency and thrice under Obama thus far.

Since Obama’s obstinance, a trillion-dollar coin is even being discussed. Not exactly a golden ticket to Willy Wonka’s factory, the far-fetched notion reportedly is based on this technicality: The Treasury could mint the platinum coin and deposit it in the Federal Reserve. We hope that’s not the real solution.

As the Concord Coalition puts it, “raising the debt limit is essentially a decision to pay the bills,” and we need “a sustainable framework for spending, taxes, deficits and debt.” We agree that a reasonable increase would allow the politically fractured process time and avoid a potential default crisis on our credit.

We have to increase the debt ceiling, but this must done with future budget cuts. We have to reduce spending, and everyone must take a bite of the austerity apple.

Let’s use the debt limit debate to forge a realistic and specific plan for fiscal sustainability. Balancing an actual budget would be nice, too.

1
Text Only
Opinion
  • David Christy col. use clip.jpg The kingdom of heaven

    Happened upon an online video the other day, replaying the 9/11 attacks on America for the umpteenth time in my viewing, and it never ceases to make the blood boil a bit, the anger well up, the sadness rekindle of that terrible day in American history.

    August 1, 2014 1 Photo

  • Legitimate governor's race should include substantive discussion

    In mid-July, a poll from the conservative-leaning Rasmussen Reports stated Fallin to be in “a surprisingly close contest.” Fallin led Dorman only 45 percent to 40 percent, according to this telephone survey of 750 likely Oklahoma voters.

    August 1, 2014

  • For the VA: A fix, not a bandage

    Fortunately, Acting VA Secretary Sloan Gibson has provided the road map leading Conferees to this solution. He recently testified that after re-examining VA’s resource needs in light of the scandal, $17.6 billion in supplemental funding is required between now and the end of fiscal year 2017.

    August 1, 2014

  • Jeff Mullin mug 2012.jpg Laugh early, laugh often, laugh at everything, especially yourself

    Laughing is good for you. It boosts your heart rate and helps burn calories. It helps improve blood flow, relieves stress, strengthens the immune system, lowers blood sugar levels and improves sleep.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Prioritize funding an Ebola vaccine before it’s too late

    “The matter has reached a crisis point,” Liberian Information Minister Lewis Brown told CNN’s Richard Quest. “The dire prognosis is that it will get worse before it gets better.”

    July 31, 2014

  • Letters.jpg Letter: Concerned about EHS sports season tickets

    I have no children at Enid Public Schools anymore, but enjoy the football, soccer and volleyball events.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Letters.jpg Letter: Give a hoot about bald, golden eagles, too

    The Environmental Protection Agency has stringent rules about covering these tanks, and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service levies heavy fines for violations of these rules, especially when it causes the death of any wildlife.

    July 31, 2014 1 Photo

  • Fire training tower at Autry Tech will be asset to area fire departments

    We can guarantee it’s going to prove to be a valuable facility for fire departments.

    July 30, 2014

  • Will Rogers web.jpg Will Rogers Daily Telegrams 7-31-2014

    Am on Presidential train and with Ambassador Morrow have just inspected Government agricultural schools and big water project.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo

  • Broadway Tower_Sheet Rock Delivery_1_BV.jpg Bringing Broadway back to life

    Back in 2012, we hoped the third time would be the charm for the historic Broadway Tower after an investment group announced plans to rehabilitation Enid’s iconic building.

    July 30, 2014 1 Photo 1 Story

Featured Ads
House Ads