Illinois Pols on U.S. Debt Concerns

As time ticks toward the debt deadline, Schakowsky and Kinzinger lay out their goals and opinions

Friday, Jul 29, 2011  |  Updated 10:33 AM CDT
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Rep. Adam Kinzinger, 11th District, believes a compromise will be reached before the default deadline.

Ivanna Hampton

Rep. Adam Kinzinger, 11th District, believes a compromise will be reached before the default deadline.

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Illinois Dem Lawmaker Chimes in on Debt Debate

Rep. Jan Schakowsky, 9th district, believes Congress should postpone deficit reduction plans and focus on raising the debt ceiling.
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Time's nearly up on partisan debt debates before the Treasury Department begins to default on its debts. Are Illinois pols concerned? Yes and no.

"I'm just as worried and just as frustrated as the American people are," Adam Kinzinger (R-11th) told NBCChicago. "We all want to work together, but both sides started very far apart, [and] we're getting closer and closer."

They're so close, Kinzinger says, that they'll not only have an agreement by the Aug. 2 deadline, but that there's also a good chance of passing the Boehner bill on Friday. "It's not perfect," he said, "but we can't let the good become the enemy of the perfect."

That might not be good enough for Jan Schakowsky (D-9th).

"The Republicans can't get their own house together to pass a bill on their own," Schakowsky said. "They have plenty of votes to do that. And as each minute passes ... we have never been against working out a larger deal."

Schakowsky called the situation a tax on all Americans, who should be furious at Republicans, she said, "for manufacturing a crisis right now that jeopardizes every single American."

"What we should do is a clean vote to raise the debt ceiling, stop fooling around. We absolutely are willing to sit down and talk about how to deal with our long-term economic situation, with debt, with jobs."

Per partisan storylines, Kinzinger says simply raising the ceiling isn't good enough.

"We were put out here to reduce the size of the federal government and just to say, "We're gonna raise it," is like frankly giving a third credit card to the kid in college that's already maxed out two. We can't do that without a plan to get ourselves in fiscal order."

Schakowsky said that something needs to be done and fast.

"The immediate crisis right now is whether or not we're going to pay our bills," she said. "This is about doing what every household has to do, and that is pay the bills. If we go into a default, this will have long term ramifications for our country."

"There is no time left to mess around with this."

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