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Federal Eye
Posted at 01:44 PM ET, 07/14/2011

Debt ceiling and federal workers: Who said it best? (#DebtDebate)


(ALEX BRANDON/ASSOCIATED PRESS)

Social Security recipients aren’t the only ones who stand to lose if the White House and lawmakers can’t reach a deal to raise the debt ceiling. The salaries of some federal workers could go unpaid as early as Aug. 3 should President Obama decide to spend the money elsewhere.

According to a report from the Bipartisan Policy Center, Obama could theoretically foot the bill for entitlement and defense spending, but would have to “eliminate all other federal spending,” including:

▪ pay for veterans

▪ pay for members of the armed services

▪ pay for civil servants

▪ funding for Pell grants

▪ funding for special-education programs

▪ funding for the federal courts

▪ funding for law enforcement

▪ funding for national nuclear programs

▪ funding for housing assistance

As the Post’s Zachary A. Goldfarb reports, the bills for “$500 million in federal salaries and $1.4 billion in payments to defense contractors.” are due on Aug. 3.

Commenters have already proposed cuts and maneuvers of their own. Below are two that encapsulate very different viewpoints. Who do you agree with more and what would you add?

Pathfinder12: “The debt ceiling is about borrowing money to pay for debt Congress has already agreed upon, much of which was approved and written by these same Republicans. They voted for the two wars, the Bush tax cuts 3 times, the Prescription Drug plan. Now they’re saying they don’t want to pay for those.”

Markandbeth92: “The debt limit should be just that... the limit. No more. Get close to the limit, cut spending.Our problem is not a tax revenue problem it is a SPENDING problem. Time to get rid of some federal agencies entirely. Department of Education (states can do it). Department of Agriculture (Interior can do it). Cut all congressional staff by half. Do a 10% budget cut across the board including Defense, Medicaid.”

Who said it best?

What do you think? Who do you agree with? Tell us in the comments below or on Twitter -- use #debtdebate in your reply and we'll post some of your replies below.

Or, just use the comments below and tell us which commenter you agree with more.

Readers debate McConnell proposal

Raise the debt ceiling or cut spending? Do you agree with pathfinder12 or markandbeth92?

By T.J. Ortenzi  |  01:44 PM ET, 07/14/2011

 
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