Ward Room
Covering Chicago's nine political influencers

Durbin Doesn't Play the Blame Game

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The senior senator from Illinois wouldn't fault either party directly for the credit downgrade. (Published Monday, Aug 8, 2011)

    Standard and Poors appeared to blame everyone in Washington D.C. when it released a report on the country's debt and subsequently downgraded the country's credit rating.

    U.S. Senator Dick Durbin, a staunch Democrat, refused to play that game, Monday, during a question and answer session at the Union League Club in Chicago.

    "I hope it will inspire some of my colleagues, and I hope I can be part of it, to stand up and work in a bipartisan way," he said.

    The senior senator from Illinois, and Gang of Six member, did his duringbest  the speech to prop up his party's embattled president, giving Barack Obama credit for steering discussions despite being placed in a difficult negotiating position.

    When asked specifically if he thought S&P dinged the United States because of Tea Partiers like Joe Walsh, Durbin demurred.

    "If you read the Standard and Poor's report, they talk about the confrontational style in Washington," Durbin said. "This is the worst I've seen it, and it comes on the heels of a number of people in the House. But in an effort to get beyond where we are today to a better place I'm not saying that as much. I'm really trying to focus on how we can sit down together at this point and do the right thing for this country."

    That statesmanlike response runs counter to the political posturing that's been going on in the wake of Friday's downgrade.