Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) issued the following statement today after Senate Republicans on a party-line vote blocked consideration of a measure to raise the federal debt ceiling:
"I find it incredible that every Republican voted against a motion to even let the Senate consider legislation to pay our bills and prevent a default. We are entering very dangerous territory.
"It is becoming increasingly possible that for the first time in the history of our country the United States will become a deadbeat nation, precipitating a national and international financial crisis. If a default occurs, it is likely that interest rates will spike for home mortgages, car loans, student loans and credit cards. It is possible that the stock market will plunge, deeply impacting pension programs and household savings. This must not be allowed to happen.
"The American people have been very clear in understanding that right-wing Tea Party Republicans should not be shutting down the government or threating not to pay our bills because of their hatred of the Affordable Care Act or wanting cuts in Social Security, Medicare or Medicaid. That is wrong. A democratic government cannot function when a small faction choses to hold the American people hostage."