Debt Deal Vote
7:18 am
Tue August 2, 2011

Michigan House members vote 11-4 in favor of debt deal

Michigan’s U.S. Representatives voted 11-4 in favor of the debt deal proposed by House and Senate Congressional leaders. The four no votes came from Democratic Representatives Hansen Clarke, John Conyers, Gary Peters, and Republican Representative Justin Amash.

Statements from Michigan’s congressional delegation in the House came out fast and furious after the vote.

In an address from the House floor, Democratic Congressman John Dingell, who voted in favor of the bill, said:

“…this is not the bill I would have written, and I do not know a single Member of Congress who believes this bill is perfect.  I agreed with President Obama’s sentiments today when he said that ‘as with any compromise, the outcome is far from satisfying.’  However, as a Member of Congress, there are times when you must hold your nose and vote for a compromise that, while imperfect, is necessary.  I believe this is one of those times.  The grave threat of default is far too near and too serious not to vote for this agreement…”

Also voting in favor of the bill was Republican Congressman Fred Upton:

“…This agreement begins to address our nation's long-term debt with firm spending cuts and caps, now and in the future.  I voted for this agreement to ensure that we will not allow the full faith and credit of the United States to be compromised. The agreement will avert a default on the national debt, which would drive up interest rates, create major financial disruptions, and harm the U.S. economy.  Meaningful spending cuts with real tools to enforce them are the reforms we need to finally stop the deficit spending and protect the next generation. Enactment of this agreement will keep our nation from default and protect Michigan families and job creators from untold economic damage.”

Republican freshman Representative Justin Amash voted against the bill:

“…I cannot in good conscience vote for so little reform when so much is at stake. I had hoped that Democrats and Republicans would work together to develop a reasonable compromise that is fiscally responsible. I would favor a package that combines eliminating special tax breaks and subsidies with a well-structured balanced budget amendment. I believe that type of package would have broad-based support from the American people. Instead, Congress continues to kick the can down the road…”

And, Democratic Congressman Gary Peters issued this statement after he voted against the measure:

“As I have said for nearly two years, we must have a comprehensive and balanced deficit reduction package as part of any debt ceiling increase, but this deal misses that mark by a mile… Sadly, this is just business as usual in Washington – it makes painful cuts for middle class families without closing tax loopholes for special interests or fixing the structural problems with our deficit."

The measure now goes to the U.S. Senate, where it is expected to pass.