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August 2--  Twelfth District Congressman John Barrow voted Monday for the bill authorizing an increase of the federal government's debt limit.  He issued the following statement on the bill and his vote.

“This bill is not perfect, but it pulls together ideas from both sides of the aisle and preserves the spirit of honest compromise that the American people expect from their leaders in Washington. This legislation provides certainty to our business community, makes much-needed spending cuts that will help get our fiscal house in order, and ensures that the United States can continue to pay its obligations on time.  Most importantly, it averts a disaster that would’ve crippled our economy and endangered the future of our nation for generations.  Supporting this plan was the fiscally responsible thing to do for our country in the short-term, but there are many more challenges facing us on our road to long-term economic security.  It’s my hope that as we deal with the challenges ahead we will focus on crafting common sense, bipartisan solutions as quickly as possible, so that we never again risk running out the clock on our nation’s economic future.” 

Meanwhile, one of Georgia's newest congressman voted against the measure.

U.S. Rep. Tom Graves (R-GA-09) issued the following statement after voting against the deal President Obama and Congressional leaders reached to raise the debt limit:

“America’s call for sweeping change last November set the stage for this great debate over our debt burden.  Washington has pushed its recklessness to the limit and violated the trust of the American people for far too long.  A debt of $14 trillion isn’t an indictment; it’s a conviction.

“Unfortunately, the final deal before us today fails the match the magnitude of the crisis.  In fact, it doesn’t come close.  In exchange for giving President Obama the largest debt limit increase in United States history, the American people receive only $10 billion in savings over the next two years.  The bill does seek out deeper spending cuts in the future, but if we’re to learn anything from history, that promise is bound to be broken.  The fact is, by the end of next year our national debt will be near $17 trillion and will remain a serious threat to our economy. 

“Ultimately, the voices of the Georgians I represent weren’t reflected in the final result, and I could not support the bill.

 “Despite the legislation’s many flaws, I do want to commend Speaker Boehner for his hard work and critical victory on the issue of taxes.  By preventing any job-destroying tax hikes from making their way into the deal, the Speaker protected a great many American jobs from being sacrificed for Washington’s bailout.

“I realize this debate has been long and very difficult, but if we intend to change a government as broken as ours, prepare for the road ahead to be even more challenging.  This debate is far from over, and I’ll continue to work toward solving our debt crisis—even if it means going against the grain every time.  We have made progress, and we will continue to fight for a brighter, more prosperous future for America.”