EDITORIAL: Congress owes it to raise debt ceiling

2013-10-13T00:00:00Z EDITORIAL: Congress owes it to raise debt ceiling nwitimes.com
October 13, 2013 12:00 am  • 

As the standoff in Washington inches closer to default, it's up to citizens to put pressure on the House and Senate to finally compromise from their rigid positions. The nation must not fail to pay its bills.

There's simply no way to solve the issues of tax reform and health care in the few days we have left before the nation goes into default.

No conditions should ever be placed on preserving our economic standing.

The nation's treasury bills have been the gold standard for the world's economy. If the United States goes into default, our position as the world's financial leader will be imperiled. Our economy will suffer, and so will the world's economy.

President Barack Obama is correct when he says it is Congress’ responsibility to pay for the spending they have already made. To not do so would be akin to an individual racking up astronomical credit card debt and then deciding the fiscally wise thing to do would be to stop making payments to the credit card company.

As much as we're uncomfortable with the deficit spending going on in Washington, the debt limit must be increased immediately to put the markets and our bond holders at ease.

Then, Congress and the White House can enter into negotiations on the issues at hand without the immediate crisis staring us in the face, and hopefully with cooler heads.

The nation needs tax reform that cuts the corporate tax rate but removes loopholes that give some companies so many breaks they don't pay their fair share. The Affordable Care Act needs reform as well. Keep the best aspects, but add cross-state competition for insurance companies. Add Indiana-style caps on medical malpractice payments, too.

But don't be so fixated on this legislation that the federal government goes into default.

What Americans need most of all is stability and trust in their government, and Congress is failing on both counts. It's time to act like statesmen for the good of the country, not merely for personal or even party aspirations.

It's time to lead the nation, not to continue this bickering.

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