Hoosier delegation votes and comments on Budget Control Act of 2011
Sen. Richard Lugar, Republican – Voted yes
"Additional deficit reductions will be determined by Congress and not an outside commission nor the president. If the Congress fails to find agreement, then mandatory cuts kick in. This is also a victory for conservative fiscal responsibility."
"Though the bill isn't everything we wanted, it's still a victory for conservatives over President Obama's out-of-control spending and big government policies. And we stopped his efforts to increase taxes dead in its tracks."
Sen. Dan Coats, Republican – Voted no
"The bill falls significantly short of what is needed to address the severity of this financial crisis.
"While I am disappointed with the final legislation, I believe progress has been made in this debate. The culture of Washington is changing from 'what can we spend' to 'where can we cut.' This is a step in the right direction and I am optimistic that we can carry this momentum in the months ahead."
Rep. Pete Visclosky, Democrat – Voted no
"Given the massive deficit our country faces, this bill is abjectly inadequate. It defers decisions we should make today until tomorrow. At a time when our economy is again faltering, it eliminates vital investments in our economic infrastructure due to our inability to address long-term problems."
Rep. Joe Donnelly, Democrat – Voted yes
"This legislation is far from perfect. I would have preferred that any increase in the debt limit be accompanied by common-sense solutions such as closing tax loopholes for companies that ship jobs overseas and ending tax breaks for big oil companies.
"Yet the possibility of defaulting on our nation's obligations, potentially causing catastrophic harm to our already fragile economy, is not an option for me. I will support the legislation before the House today because America's economic future depends on it."
Rep. Marlin Stutzman, Republican – Voted no
"I voted against this bill because, instead of providing a certain path forward for a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution, it offers Washington politicians loopholes to avoid sending such an amendment to the states.
"If the past has shown us anything, it is that, in this town, not all cuts are created equal. This bill does not prevent a bipartisan commission from returning to Washington's budgetary gimmicks. I fear that, by using the same old tricks, the commission may avoid sending a Balanced Budget Amendment to the states. This bill just wasn't enough."
Rep. Todd Rokita, Republican – Voted no
"For decades now, we have spent too much money on ourselves and have intentionally allowed our kids and grandkids to pay for it. It is intergenerational theft — literally stealing from our best asset, our posterity. The correct course of action, as I have said from the beginning, is to enact permanent and structural reform as the price for raising the debt ceiling. Today's bill does not do that."
Rep. Dan Burton, Republican – Voted no
"Our nation has never defaulted in its history and we must take action to continue to meet our financial obligations. However, in good conscience I could not support the deficit reduction package worked out this past weekend. I have said repeatedly that Washington does not have a revenue problem, it has a spending problem and this bill does nothing to change the spending culture ingrained in Washington.
"The American people want a solution to this crisis, not a deal that allows Washington to kick the can down the road once again. Regrettably, the deficit reduction deal is not that solution."
Rep. Mike Pence, Republican – Voted yes
"The debt ceiling compromise negotiated by the bipartisan leadership in Congress and the White House is a modest but meaningful first step in the direction of fiscal discipline and reform, and I will support it.
"The Budget Control Act is not so much a good deal as it is a good start on restoring fiscal discipline to our nation's capitol."
Rep. Andre Carson, Democrat – Voted no
"I am certain the president believed this was the deal he had to make to avoid disaster, given he was negotiating with Republicans who seemed willing to allow the country to default in order to protect their wealthy friends. To this end, I do not fault the President, who I respect greatly.
"But I am here to represent my constituents in the 7th District, most of whom say we need a balanced approach. They understand the need to sacrifice, provided that sacrifice is shared and it results in job creation. But under this approach, oil companies earning billions and companies exporting American jobs sacrifice nothing. Millionaires, whose low tax rates have not led to job creation, sacrifice nothing."
Rep. Larry Bucshon, Republican – Voted yes
"This is the first step in the long process to restore fiscal responsibility to our nation. We cannot continue to kick the can down the road to future generations. Maintaining our nation's 'AAA' credit rating is an important measure that had to be considered. While I would have liked to have seen more immediate cuts in spending, I realized that we needed to provide certainty to our financial markets, job creators, and our creditors that we will not default on our nation's debt."
Rep. Todd Young, Republican – Voted yes
"This package isn't the bold solution some of us were hoping for, but it is a start. This package begins to move us in the right direction through immediate spending cuts; enforceable spending controls; the possibility of a Balanced Budget Amendment; and the chance to save our health care and pension programs from bankruptcy. Most importantly, we won't impose an additional tax burden on families or small businesses at a time they can least afford it.
"This small first step emboldens me to continue pushing Washington to take bigger steps, and in the process I'm hopeful we'll get our economy moving once again."
The above is one of an ongoing series of reports from the Indiana Statehouse by students at the Franklin College Pulliam School of Journalism.