Friday, January 4, 2013

From Fiscal Cliff To Debt Ceiling

By: Dale Bowling

The Fiscal Cliff drama is finally over.

First, the good news: we won't see any cuts to our badly-needed social safety net or to earned benefits
like Social Security or Medicare and the tax increases from wealthier Americans will definitely help
keep the US on a sound financial footing.

Bad news: We're a month away from the Debt Ceiling being up for renewal and Republicans are out for blood this time.

You may say to yourself, "when haven't the Republicans in Congress been out for blood?" and you
would of course, be right. But last time (in the summer of 2011) Republicans were much more
optimistic about the future. They thought President Obama was in deep trouble politically and the
Senate would theirs as well as the White House after 2012.

This time the GOP's back is against the wall. Obama was handily reelected, the Senate did not go Red
and the only reason they kept the House is that redistriciting had stacked the deck against Democrats
so profoundly. Republican popularity is in the toilet and the GOP has just been outmanoevered on the
Fiscal Cliff negotiations.

In other words, Republicans need a big win right now and they think threatening government shutdown is the way to that victory.

And what do they want in exchange for not breaking the government and punishing millions of
Americans for entirely political reasons? Big cuts in Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.

The Debt Ceiling is shaping up to be a continuation of the Fiscal Cliff debate. It will be just another
Republican attempt to strike at Big Government.

And by Big Government, I mean the things that ordinary Americans have paid for and expect to be
there for them when they need them.

It is really hard for Republicans to argue that Government is the problem (as Reagan put it) when Social Security and Medicare are so universally popular and successful.  The GOP's only option is to sabotage Social Security and Medicare to the point they don't work well and then say, "see, Big Government doesn't work".

Like what they did to financial regulation, environmental regulation, etc. - defund the agencies, lay off droves of their workers and then loudly decry the backlog or failings in oversight that develop as a result of those cuts.

So in this Neverending War against Grandma Poor People Big Government, you and I must put our foots down and say, "No More!".

Contact your Congressperson (remember, you might have a new one) and Senator to let them know
that deep cuts to Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid are off the table and the debt ceiling in non-

Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth- Illinois  8th Congressional District

Congresswoman Tammy Duckworth
United States House of Representatives
104 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515

Ph: 202-225-3711

Congressman Bill Foster - Illinois 11th Congressional District

Congressman Bill Foster
United States House of Representatives
1224 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515

Ph: 202-225-3515


Congressman Mike Quigley - Illinois 5th Congressional District

Congressman Mike Quigley
1124 Longworth House Office Building
Washington DC, 20510

Phone:  202.225.4061




Congressman Peter Roskam- Illinois 6th Congressional District

Peter Roskam
United States House of Representatives
227 Cannon House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515-1306

Ph: 202-225-4561



Twitter: @PeterRoskam

Illinois Senator Dick Durbin

Sen. Dick Durbin
United States Senate
711 Hart Senate Bldg.
Washington, DC 20510
Ph: (202) 224-2152




Illinois Senator Mark Kirk

Senator Mark Kirk
524 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington DC, 20510

Phone: 202-224-2854



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