This action might not be possible to undo. Are you sure you want to continue?
TO MEMBERS OF THE U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES: The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than three million businesses and organizations of every size, sector, and region, strongly supports the amendment in the nature of a substitute to S. 627, the “Budget Control Act of 2011,” which would increase the debt ceiling and address associated spending issues. This legislation is critical. Default on debt obligations is not an acceptable option. The time for Congress to act is now. This legislation would extend the debt limit in two phases and avoid a default on the obligations of the United States. The first phase would provide for $1.2 trillion in discretionary spending cuts and an immediate increase of up to $1 trillion in the debt limit. The bill would allow for a subsequent increase of $1.6 trillion in the debt limit once Congress passes legislation to reduce the deficit by an additional $1.8 trillion. This second stage of spending reduction would be formulated by a bipartisan Congressional committee and be voted on by the Congress in an “up or down” vote. In addition, the legislation would require a vote on a balanced budget amendment by the end of the year. While no legislation is perfect, the substitute amendment to S. 627 is a responsible approach because it would: cut spending in the immediate term by more that the increase in the debt ceiling; ensure a workable, enforceable mechanism to facilitate additional spending cuts for future debt limit increases; and allow for a vote on significant reform to the budget process. A default on the obligations of the United States would most assuredly cause severe, immediate, and pervasive economic harm in the form of higher interest rates, a decline in the dollar, a drop in the stock markets, higher oil prices, and the loss of economic growth and jobs. Congress and the Administration have haggled for months without success over ways to address long-run debt and deficit issues and how to raise the debt ceiling. Political brinksmanship is no longer an acceptable strategy for either the White House or congressional leaders. While this legislation is not a solution for all of America’s debt and deficit problems, it is a necessary first step in the right direction. The Chamber urges Congress to act now on this issue. The Chamber strongly supports the amendment in the nature of the substitute to S. 627. The Chamber will consider including votes on, or in relation to, this issue in our annual How They Voted scorecard. Sincerely
R. Bruce Josten