Senator Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) appeared on CNN’s “State of the Union” with Candy Crowley Sunday to discuss the national debt and upcoming debt ceiling negotiations.
After the down-to-the-wire drama of the “fiscal cliff” deal, Graham bluntly stated that if Congress cannot establish a responsible plan to reduce the deficit, every member of Congress should be “fired.”
That doesn’t mean, however, that the debt ceiling should not be raised. Graham simply argued that the two need to go hand-in-hand.
“I want to raise the debt ceiling, but I will not do it without a plan to get out of debt,” he declared.
One possible solution would be a “dollar for dollar offset,” where we cut spending by $1 for every $1 that we raise the debt ceiling, Graham added.
“Our Democratic friends haven’t passed a budget in three years, contrary to the law of the land, and why raise money and spend it if you don’t have a budget? So a dollar for dollar offset and a budget I think are two conditions to raising the debt ceiling.”
The Huffington Post reminds, though, that President Obama has said he is unwilling to negotiate on the matter:
Graham’s comments came 24 hours after President Barack Obama used his weekly Saturday address to reiterate that he “will not compromise” on lifting the federal debt ceiling.
“If Congress refuses to give the United States the ability to pay its bills on time, the consequences for the entire global economy could be catastrophic,” Obama said. “Our families and our businesses cannot afford that dangerous game again.”
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi offered a third option on Sunday. In her opinion, President Obama should just invoke the 14th Amendment and unilaterally raise the debt limit.
But as long as Congress has a say, Graham vowed: “I’m not going to borrow trillions more dollars without a plan to get out of debt.”
Mediaite has video of the interview: