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Full Faith and Credit Act

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. GRIFFIN of Arkansas. Madam Speaker, I thank the chairman.

I think it is important to say first and foremost that no matter how passionate you are, no matter how loud you scream, it doesn't convert nonsense to facts. The point is China's debt holdings are less than 8 percent. It makes for a great talking point. I understand that.

Madam Speaker, nobody wants to hit the debt ceiling. In fact, no one wants to get anywhere near it. On the contrary, we are the ones that are trying to get Washington's spending under control so it will live within its means. That's why we talk about budgets and spending and living within our means, because House Republicans fight that fight. If we weren't doing it, we wouldn't even know that there are limits to our spending. The House budget does just that, balancing the Federal budget in 10 years.

We understand that we must take precautions to protect the creditworthiness of the United States. We can hope for the best, but we must prepare for the worst. And the worst that can happen with the debt ceiling is a government default. The bill before us today takes default off the table, period. No more, no less.

We've been told by the credit-rating agencies that the greatest factor affecting our national credit rating is the government's ability to pay its debt-holders. This bill makes sure that it will. This bill requires--not allows--requires Treasury to continue to pay principal and interest on existing debt if, and only if, we hit the debt ceiling before a deal is reached. This is a backstop that takes default off the table.

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Mr. GRIFFIN of Arkansas. With it we can focus on the other issues of debt and spending that created the problem in the first place. We can have an honest debate about what is driving government debt and how to deal with it. I hope we don't get anywhere near the debt ceiling limit. I hope we use the next few months to negotiate and reach an agreement that avoids any risk of hitting the debt ceiling; but until then, we should agree that it's our duty to protect America's credit rating.

I look forward to voting for this measure, and I urge my colleagues to join me in supporting it.

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