With the nation’s debt limit increase compromise measure approved by the House of Representatives on Wednesday night, Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R–Bakersfield) wound up winning the support of his colleagues from the Central Valley.
Driving the news: Representatives David Valadao (R–Hanford), Jim Costa (D–Fresno), John Duarte (R–Modesto) and Tom McClintock (R–Elk Grove), and Josh Harder (D–Tracy) all voted in support of the Fiscal Responsibility Act.
- McCarthy brokered a deal with President Joe Biden to raise the debt ceiling from $31.4 trillion and avoid a federal default.
- The deal is estimated to reduce deficits by around $1.5 trillion over the next 10 years, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
Why they’re supporting it: McClintock issued a lengthy statement detailing his support, saying his decision was largely influenced by the Budget Control Act in 2011 to raise the debt limit, which he voted against.
- McClintock said he did not vote for the Budget Control Act because it failed to preserve the nation’s triple-A credit rating, yet the act turned out to be the only true constraint on federal spending in the following years. He called his decision in 2011 the one he most regrets over his 15 years in office.
- While he said the Fiscal Responsibility Act only reduces current spending slightly and could increase the debt limit to as much as $4 trillion, it’s the constraints on future spending that makes it the most important victory for fiscal conservatives in over a decade.
- “Republicans shouldn’t compare it to the perfect,” McClintock said. “Our system of government was never designed to make perfect legislation. They shouldn’t compare it to the Limit, Save and Grow Act that was negotiated and agreed to solely among House Republicans. With both a Senate and President of decidedly different views, the outcome is always going to be a disappointment compared to what a purely-Republican bill would do.”
- Without this deal, McClintock said the Biden administration would use the failure to increase the debt limit in the most destructive way it can and push through ruinous spending measures.
- Valadao and Duarte issued statements of their own that – while much shorter than McClintock’s explanation – detail their support for the Fiscal Responsibility Act.
- “Central Valley families adjust their budgets when they overspend – Washington should do the same,” Valadao said. “This bill avoids a catastrophic default on our debt while limiting government spending, cutting red tape, and holding the executive branch accountable for its spending. Importantly, this bill ensures full funding for our veterans’ programs and national security while protecting Social Security and Medicare. This historic spending reforms were only possible because House Republicans were united in passing a plan and forcing President Biden to the negotiating table.”
- “The Fiscal Responsibility Act not only gets America’s financial house in order – it protects social security, Medicare, and veterans’ benefits for generations to come,” Duarte said on Twitter.