Congressman Ben Ray Luján of New Mexico's Third District released the following statement today after voting against a House Republican bill requiring the United States to pay debts to foreign creditors before paying other obligations if the debt ceiling is reached.
"With this legislation, House Republicans are sending a disappointing message that they are still willing to default on payments if they do not get what they want. While the Republican bill would ensure that foreign creditors like China receive their payments, it would create uncertainty for businesses here at home and put our nation's creditworthiness at risk. Payments for veterans' benefits, active duty soldiers, and Medicare and Medicaid could be delayed.
"We have already seen how a fight over the debt ceiling plays out and the negative impact it has on our economy. When House Republicans first held an increase in the debt limit hostage, we saw the nation's credit rating downgraded, our weak economy take another self-inflicted blow, and the path was laid for the what eventually became the sequester's arbitrary cuts.
"House Republicans should drop their attempts to play games with the debt ceiling and remove all doubt that the United States could default on any of its payments."