WASHINGTON--Illinois Republican Reps. Joe Walsh and Tim Johnson on Friday were two of 22 Republicans to vote against a GOP bill to avert an Aug. 2 federal government default by raising the debt ceiling.
The measure, championed by House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) who leads the GOP controlled House is all but certain to be tabled Friday night by the Senate, where the Democrats hold the majority.
The bill passed the House on a 218-210 rollcall: No Democrats voted for the measure while Boehner mustered 218 GOP votes for the legislation with 22 hard-line conservatives voting no because the bill did not go far enough. (Because of vacancies, 217 votes are needed to pass a House bill.)
Rep. Judy Biggert (R-Ill.) who backed the Boehner measure, said in a statement it was a "realistic approach." Walsh said in a statement he voted no because Boehner's legislation only "kicked the can down the road."
Below, Biggert statement....
"My constituents want an end to this crisis, an end to the uncertainty, and an end to the cycle of debt that is draining our economy. The Budget Control Act would provide that peace of mind, and I'm pleased that a majority of my colleagues tonight were willing to step up and take the hard vote and send a common sense solution to the Senate.
"The Budget Control Act would immediately avert a default, make nearly $1 trillion in cuts - more than the debt increase - control future spending, and hold Congress accountable by advancing a balanced budget amendment.
"It's a realistic approach, and I would hope that Democrat leaders in the Senate will reconsider their opposition, put people before politics, and do what's right for the American economy."
Below, statement from Walsh, a leader of the Tea Party faction....
"I recognize the difficulty of negotiating with a President who refuses to submit a plan of his own. I commend Republican leadership for putting forward another plan to raise the debt ceiling and try to steer America away from financial ruin. But due to the President's unwillingness to compromise, House Leadership has had to offer a plan that does not structurally reform the way Washington does business."
"Under President Obama's leadership, this county's deficit has skyrocketed. In two short years, the national debt has ballooned to more than $14 trillion. We cannot allow this irresponsible spending to continue. We need to reverse course and make serious efforts to slash reckless and wasteful spending. I am afraid that the plan voted on today continues to kick the can down the road to the next generation."
"The credit rating agencies made it clear that the United States will lose its AAA credit rating unless we produce a solid plan to reduce our nation's debt by trillions of dollars and put fiscal guardrails in place to protect future generations. That plan is Cut, Cap, and Balance."
"The Boehner Plan is a commendable effort, but we had a great opportunity to make history here - to permanently change Washington. The House must continue to do everything it can to live up to the mandate the American people gave Congress last fall and continue to tackle Washington's reckless spending habits and free up the private economy to create jobs."