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Key Vote

    How Your Members of Congress Voted on the Debt Ceiling

    On February 7th, the debt ceiling, which had been suspended, snapped back into place, leaving the United States saddled with $17.3 trillion in debt.  

    To their shame, Republican leaders in both chambers never even considered attaching meaningful spending reforms to the debt ceiling bill. Instead, much of the debate inside D.C. involved attaching measures that would have actually increased spending. 

    But perhaps more distressing is that this extension once again simply suspends the debt ceiling for a set period of time - in this case until March 15, 2015.  Until that time, the president could, if he wished, borrow well above the amounts authorized under current budgetary limits, and Congress would likely be unable to stop him.  This transfer of borrowing authority from Congress to the executive is dangerous and irresponsible, and must not be allowed to continue.

    For all of this, the bill to raise the debt ceiling S. 540, passed the House, 221-201, and passed the Senate, 67-31.  [Note that the bill title doesn't match its contents - the House used an existing Senate bill as a "vehicle" to pass it more quickly.]

    Sadly 28 Republicans voted to suspend the debt ceiling with no strings attached:

    Boehner (OH-8)    Calvert (CA-42)    Camp (MI-4)    Cantor (VA-7)    Coble (NC-6)

    Collins (NY-27)    Dent (PA-15)    Fitzpatrick (PA-8)    Grimm (NY-11)    

    Hanna (NY-22)     Hastings (WA-4)     Issa (CA-49)    King (NY-2)    LoBiondo (NJ-2)    

    McCarthy (CA-23)    McKeon (CA-25)    Meehan (PA-7)    Miller (CA-31)    

    Nunes (CA-22)    Reichert (WA-8)    Rogers (KY-5)    Roskam (IL-6)    Royce (CA-39)    

    Runyan (NJ-3)    Shimkus (IL-15)    Smith (NJ-4)    Valadao (CA-21)    Wolf (VA-10)

    And 12 Republicans voted to end debate on the debt ceiling increase in the Senate, allowing it to pass:

    Barasso (WY)    Collins (ME)    Corker (TN)    Cornyn (TX)    Flake (AZ)    Hatch (UT) 

    Johanns (NE)    Kirk (IL)    McCain (AZ)    McConnell (KY)    Murkowski (AK)    Thune (SD)

    **Update** It appears that the Senate vote was more contentious than the numbers indicate.  Roll Call reports that the senators' votes were kept silent instead of being called live - allowing six GOP senators to switch their votes at the last second to ensure that the bill could pass.  This is a striking, but sadly all-too-common, illustration of legislators being willing to vote in whatever direction they feel is politically necessary, instead of voting on principle and good policy.

    3 comments
    Dana.K.Wall's picture
    Dana Wall
    02/13/2014

    I have yet to actually speak to someone in McCain's office and his voice mail is always full. I am proud to be from Arizona but I am not proud of our Senators. We need to recall them both ASAP. I thought there was hope for Flake, But sadly not anymore. We need people in D.C. that will actually represent "We the People".

    stonestone's picture
    stone stone
    02/16/2014

    Sounds to me that some didn't learn anything from the last time the GOP tried to shit down the government. The last time the debt ceiling was compromised by the GOP- or as more properly put- the "Tea Party" where the government was shut down it cost the US economy BILLIONS of dollars and at the same time tarnished that party's reputation ( negatively).
    So perhaps next time, maybe use at least one iota of common sense when bemoaning the fact that congress for once actually did its job versus bend to the desires of a small sub-section of the GOP that is grossly out of touch with reality.

    Clintn Lester
    02/14/2014

    Looks like just the people now, not any more American ' We the People ' to it,! 'We the People' left when America let the unamerican electorial voter, vote crooks In, 0ther wise by the General Majority Votes, Mitt Romney everybody knows won still yet by a landslide,!!!!