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Why the Tea Party is unyielding on the debt ceiling

The liberal media have gone to warp speed in their defense of President Obama and their attacks on the Tea Party. We are “extreme” and “dangerous.” Republicans are “afraid of” the Tea Party. And more.

The narrative in the media is that Obama and Republican House Speaker John Boehner were close to a deal last week that would have resolved the debt-ceiling crisis. It would have allowed for continued borrowing and more “revenue,” the euphemism of the day for tax increases. And the Tea Party said no.

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The GOP fires its arrows in the debt debate.

The GOP fires its arrows in the debt debate.

The Tea Party did say no. Unfortunately, Boehner is not listening to those who elected him and is now pushing a plan with almost nonexistent budget cuts.

Why is the Tea Party intransigent on the debt ceiling? Why is the Tea Party pushing congressional Republicans so hard that we have a crisis?

As the founder of Tea Party Nation, I feel confident in saying that the Tea Party understands what so many in Washington seem to have forgotten: We do not have a debt crisis. We have a spending crisis. There is only one way you get to a debt crisis — you spend too much money.

Average Americans understand that the federal government is bloated. The government funds too many wasteful programs. There are too many programs and spending bills that exist only to help get senators or representatives reelected.

The Tea Party movement understands that if we allow Congress to borrow more money or raise taxes, all we are doing is funding the endless expansion of government.

We understand that we must stop the spending. Where this country is headed under the Obama-Pelosi-Reid axis of fiscal evil is not uncharted territory. Greece has been there and done that. The Greeks borrowed too much and spent too much, and they cannot tax their way out of their problems. Greece has created such an entitlement class that its politicians cannot cut spending without being voted out of office. The Greek economy is going the way of the Death Star in “Star Wars,” and the final explosion should be just as spectacular.

Americans are angry at the federal government and do not want their taxes raised. Nor do they want Congress to borrow more, considering how poorly lawmakers have managed the money we give them.

The Government Accountability Office released a report in March outlining billions of tax dollars that were being squandered in duplicative, wasteful programs or ones that had completely failed or were fraudulent. Republicans in Congress should have been having cage fights to see which representative could be first on the House floor to introduce the legislation to end that spending.

We are still waiting.

The GAO found in 2008 that more than 40 percent of the purchases made with government cards were improper, fraudulent or constituted embezzlement. These credit cards are being used to purchase Xboxes, lingerie and more.

Americans rightly think there is something wrong when our government has spent $2.6 million to teach Chinese prostitutes how to drink responsibly. Americans are tired of “bridges to nowhere,” ferries to nowhere, neon light museums, cowboy poetry readings and cow flatulence studies — all of which are being paid for with our tax dollars.

The left has accused the Tea Party of wanting America to default on its debt obligations. Nothing could be further from the truth. The Tea Party wants America to stop incurring debt obligations and to cut back on the wasteful spending already in place.

We in the Tea Party understand a basic concept that Washington has forgotten: When you are in a hole, quit digging. Every time we have approached the debt ceiling, we have been told the same thing: If we do not raise the debt limit, it will be the end of the world as we know it. A couple of years later, when we find ourselves facing the same crisis, we’re told the same thing.

At some point, this will end. America cannot keep borrowing money it does not have. There is a common fate for those who spend too much money. If you doubt that, visit a bankruptcy court sometime.

We can see Greece’s economy in its death spiral. That is our future if we do not stop out-of-control government spending and the borrowing to cover it.

Americans want Washington to do one simple thing: Stop spending money we do not have.

The writer is founder and chief executive of Tea Party Nation.

 
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