Obama: Not Raising Debt Ceiling Will Create New ‘Republican Default Tax’

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WASHINGTON (CBS DC) – In his weekly address — incorrectly labeled on the White House website as the week of July 12 —  President Barack Obama talked about the dangers of not meeting the country’s financial commitments, raising the debt ceiling and ending the “Republican shutdown.”

“I met with some really innovative small business owners on Friday who have already lost contracts, lost customers and have put hiring on hold,” said Obama. “Because the pain of this Republican shutdown has trickled down to their bottom lines.”

“It’s hurting the very citizens that our government exists to serve. That’s why a growing number of reasonable Republicans say it should end now,” continued Obama.

Obama stated that the shutdown has curbed conversation about moving the country forward, and mentioned that in the past three-and-a-half years the U.S. has created 7.5 million new jobs and cut deficits in half.

“It wouldn’t be wise,” he said, “to just kick the debt-ceiling can down the road for a couple months, and flirt with the first-ever intentional default right in the middle of the holiday shopping season. Because damage to America’s sterling credit rating wouldn’t just cause global markets to go haywire; it would become more expensive for everyone in America to borrow money.”

“Students paying for college. Newlyweds buying a home. It would amount to a new tax — a Republican default tax — on every family and business in America,” said President Obama.

The federal government shutdown continued into its 14th day on Monday, with no solution in sight for raising the U.S. borrowing authority above the $16.7 trillion debt limit or reopening the government.

Obama said that “manufacturing crises” to shut down the government is not how government works, and it’s not how it should work. He said that politics is a battle of ideas that is advanced through legislation and elections – not extortion.

The president reinforced that the shutdown and congressional in-fighting “is not normal” and also “dangerous” for the US to continue. Obama added that Americans should not become disengaged with the process, and should press to move past the current troubles.

“Let’s pass a budget, put people back to work and end this Republican shutdown. Let’s pay our bills and end an economic shutdown.”

–Benjamin Fearnow

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