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PLAYING "CHICKEN" WITH THE DEBT IS NOT A GAME

Washington, DC -- Congressman Eliot Engel (D-NY-17) issued the following statement after the Republican Congressional Leadership walked out on the bipartisan talks to raise the debt ceiling and strike a 2012 deal on a budget.

“I am disappointed the Republicans seem to prefer playing politics with the state of our economy.  Any agreement on a budget, and the debt ceiling, is likely to produce many bitter pills for people to swallow.  Democrats are still at the table and are willing to make sacrifices, while it appears the Republicans are more concerned with appeasing the Tea Party. 

“Since May 31, when the Republicans gave us the sham vote on increasing the debt ceiling, the stock market is down about 650 points, more than five percent.  Gambling with the debt ceiling could have catastrophic consequences for our economy, on our ability to pay our troops, and cause the loss of hundreds of thousands more jobs, and perversely, more debt being piled on to our current situation. 

“I call on Republicans to stop threatening to take their ball and go home when the game doesn’t go completely their way.  It is time for leadership, not gamesmanship.”

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