The Plot Against Plan B

Reporting on Politics and Policy.
July 21 2011 8:13 AM

The Plot Against Plan B

Greg Sargent reported yesterday that the Club for Growth was whipping against a possible punt on the debt ceiling along McConnell-Reid lines. Yesterday evening, FreedomWorks joined in on the fun. The Tea Party group has constructed a widget that lets activists locate their members of Congress and explain, with handy talking points ("We don't elect Congress so they can abdicate their responsibilities to the President"), why they resolutely oppose the plan and want them to sign on to Rep. Joe Walsh's hell-no letter.

David Weigel David Weigel

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

Here's the text of the letter.

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Dear Mr. Speaker and Mr. Leader:

The August 2nd deadline is approaching quickly. Americans are losing hope as Congress could again fail on its promise to permanently rein in government spending.

The debt ceiling is intended to control federal spending but Washington continues to simply raise it without considering the consequences. American families have been working through a recession for the past three years by spending less and saving more, yet the federal government continues to spend more money it simply does not have.

Therefore, on behalf of the millions of Americans we represent, we strongly urge you to both publicly oppose Senator McConnell’s plan to raise the debt ceiling and ensure it never comes to the House floor for a vote.

The McConnell Plan punts on our duty as Members of the United States Congress. The plan, at its core, would allow the President to raise the debt ceiling on his own in exchange for insufficient spending cuts and a congressional “expression of disapproval.” McConnell’s plan supersedes the rights of the American people. The only way for average American families to act on the debt ceiling is through their elected representatives in Congress.

We understand Senator Mitch McConnell’s frustration with the debt ceiling debate, but his plan enables Congress to avoid making the hard decisions. This plan is nothing more than politics as usual: it passes the buck to President Obama and robs the American people of their voice in Congress. If we are going to continue saddling innocent Americans with more and more debt, they must be included in the discussion.

Senator McConnell’s plan is business as usual and does not offer any real solution to runaway spending. We appreciate you hearing our concerns and look forward to working with you in getting this nation’s fiscal house in order.

David Weigel is a Slate political reporter. 

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