As President Barack Obama summoned Republican and Democratic leaders the White House to hammer out a deal to raise the nation’s debt ceiling, Upper East Side Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney cast doubt on whether or not a long-term solution was possible.
“It looks like the vehicle is going to be the the McConnell deal in some form,” she said. ” I think that the polling shows that it’s beginning to look a lot like it’s the Tea Party versus every one else.
The McConnell proposal would raise the debt ceiling without tackling the nation’s long term debt. President Obama has pushed for a grander bargain, as have a group of six senators known as “The Gang of Six.”
Maloney said that the Gang of Six proposal is not “flushed out completely,” and with time running out, it doesn’t look like it will be.
Maloney added that even Tea Partiers seem to come to grips in recent day with the fact that the debt ceiling must be raised.
People realize that default is going to make the crisis of the fall [of 2008] look like a walk in the park,” she said. “Interest rates will go through the roof. The dollar will fall. It has never happened before.”
With the August 2 deadline to raise the debt ceiling approaching, Maloney said that there was even more urgency because the economy was suffering under the continuing uncertainty.
“Would you expand a business in the middle of all of this, not knowing if interest rates were going up?” she asked. “It’s hurting the economic climate right now.”
Maloney also expressed frustration which what she termed the Republican “default deniers” singling out Minnesota Congresswoman Michelle Bachmann by name, and noted that the debt ceiling was raised several times under previous presidents without this kind of brinkmanship.
The difference now?
“It’s a different group of people.”
Maloney was uncertain how a deal would come about, since a significant part of the Republican House doesn’t want the debt ceiling raised at all, and even larger segment is categorically opposed to tax increases. But she said she was certain that a deal would be reached.
“The fallout would be catastrophic.”
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