Today, Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee marked the 2nd anniversary of the S&P downgrade of the U.S. government credit rating, calling on Republicans to end their obstruction and delay come to the table and negotiate a budget that puts people to work, strengthens the middle class, and brings down the deficit in a responsible way.
"In 2011, when Republicans took the American government to the brink of default, holding the debt limit hostage, the American people and the economy paid the price -- with the U.S credit rating being downgraded for the first time in history. Hardworking American families simply cannot afford another round of brinkmanship, which could result in lost retirement savings and higher mortgage and credit card payments, with Republicans playing politics with the nation's debt limit and economy," said Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee.
In 2011, House Republicans spent months playing brinkmanship on raising the debt limit -- with the final deal signed within hours of default. As a result, for the first time in history, the U.S. credit rating was downgraded by S&P, costing taxpayers an estimated $19 billion over 10 years due to increased borrowing costs. During those months of chaos, job creation and economic growth slowed and consumer confidence plummeted.
A repeat of this debt limit brinkmanship could savage the stock market and result in lower retirement savings (401(k)s invested in the market ) -- and raise interest rates on everything from mortgages to credits card. In the lead up to the fall debates on funding the government and raising the debt limit, there have been some Republican calls to hold these measures hostage in order to defund the Affordable Care Act.
"Congress has adjourned for August even though there is urgent work to do, and the GOP continues to threaten government shut down and default instead of working with us to boost economic growth. It is time to end sequestration and pass H.R. 900, the "End Sequestration Now Act," of which I am a co-sponsor. I also call upon the Republican leadership to stop their obstruction and delay, and come to the table to negotiate a budget that puts people to work, strengthens the middle class, and brings down the deficit in a responsible way," said Congresswoman Sheila Jackson Lee.