Isakson and Chambliss Vote for Debt Ceiling and Restart Compromise

Because they are good at their jobs. Take note those that are running for Senate, this is what is expected of the more august body. The full press release is posted below, with full quotes after the jump, as my version of the thanks of a grateful nation.

Chambliss, Isakson Statements on Bipartisan Plan to Reopen Government, Prevent Default



WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Senate passed bipartisan legislation to reopen the government and prevent a default by a vote of 81 to 18. U.S. Sens. Saxby Chambliss and Johnny Isakson both voted for the legislation and made the following statements:

U.S. Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga.:


“I applaud Speaker Boehner, Leader Reid and Leader McConnell for their work to reopen the government and prevent a default on our nation’s obligations. While this is certainly not the deal Republicans hoped for, it is the best deal we could negotiate under the circumstances.


“I agree with my fellow Republicans and the American people that Obamacare is a deeply flawed and damaging law. I remain as committed as ever to dismantling Obamacare before it has a chance to further damage our economy.


“However, defunding Obamacare in the CR was never a realistic goal. Republicans control only one-half of one-third of the federal government, and the president has the power to veto. Shutting down the government only placed undue stress on Americans and on the economy, and lost Republican’s advantage to negotiate on the debt ceiling.


“Our fiscal crisis is the most important challenge we face. While I don’t believe Congress should allow a potentially catastrophic default by the federal government, I do believe that any increase in the debt ceiling should have come with policy reforms and assurances that future spending and deficits are being addressed in a meaningful way. If Republicans had chosen to use the debt ceiling as an opportunity to force action on our debt and deficit, we could have won more spending cuts and significant reforms to entitlements. Instead, we took no concrete steps toward reducing America’s public debt, and simply preserved the spending cuts we won in 2011.


“For our nation to be strong, for our country to prosper, we cannot continue to play politics with the American economy. We will have another opportunity to address the debt ceiling in the coming months, and I hope my colleagues across-the-aisle and across-the-capitol will stop the partisan posturing and begin working together to retire our nearly $17 trillion debt.”


U.S. Sen. Johnny Isakson, R-Ga.:


“These past few weeks should be a wake-up call. It’s time that Congress gets back to doing our job of budgeting, appropriating, and conducting oversight to address our unsustainable debt and deficits. That’s why I have introduced a bipartisan bill, the Biennial Budgeting and Appropriations Act, with Sen. Shaheen that would reform our nation’s broken budget process and restore fiscal discipline.


“Today’s bipartisan agreement reopens the federal government through January 15 and sets up budget negotiations between the House and Senate for a long-term spending plan. I’m pleased that the bill averts a default while preserving and protecting the historic government spending cuts from the Budget Control Act of 2011 that have resulted in the largest spending cuts in 50 years. I am also very pleased that this bill will help prevent fraud and abuse by strengthening income verification measures to determine who will be eligible for subsidies under Obamacare.”


  1. John Konop says:

    Johnny and Saxby are real adults! They put aside the political BS, and did what is best for the country. Had the adults negotiated rather than the kids we would of gotten a way better deal!

    • Three Jack says:

      What ‘kids’ were negotiating John? And how is it that JI and SC are ‘adults’ simply because they voted for another trillion added to the debt with no cuts, no reform and only a 3 month window before this all starts again.

      The real ‘adults’ are listed below in John Vestal’s post. Those ‘adults’ realize we cannot sustain this complete lack of fiscal responsibility much longer. Before too long, the government is more likely to face a real shutdown rather than any semblance of fiscal sanity.

      • John Konop says:

        Cruz and company did the worse negotiating I have ever seen.Obama had already given signs he would give on SS via CPI……Had Johnny lead the negotiating over the above crowd we would of gotten way more…..instead we put a gun to everyone head and McConnell ends up with a pork deal… a good joke it is all about timing…..

        • Three Jack says:

          Cruz and company never had the opportunity to negotiate even though there were numerous bills passed by the house to kickstart discussion. Unfortunately the ‘adult’s in the senate refused to even consider a single one of the bills, including your GA boys. The bad joke is on us as we are stuck with 2 ineffective senators who have yet to do much of anything other than join the gang of the week.

  2. John Vestal says:

    Coburn (R-OK)
    Cornyn (R-TX)
    Crapo (R-ID)
    Cruz (R-TX)
    Enzi (R-WY)
    Grassley (R-IA)
    Heller (R-NV)
    Johnson (R-WI)
    Lee (R-UT)
    Paul (R-KY)
    Risch (R-ID)
    Roberts (R-KS)
    Rubio (R-FL)
    Scott (R-SC)
    Sessions (R-AL)
    Shelby (R-AL)
    Toomey (R-PA)
    Vitter (R-LA)

  3. ARAR says:

    it is hard for me to see how raising the debt ceiling, so we can spend more money than we take in, can be best for the Country. what a crock……

  4. Harry says:

    Hopefully all the Republicans who voted for this fiasco will be primaried and defeated. I’d rather see a Democrat take a seat rather than have a Republican who moves the party away from conservative principles. If they don’t think they need Tea Party support then let them win without it. One thing you can say for the Democrats: They stick together.

    • benevolus says:

      I think there is more than one Party calling themselves Republicans. It seems there’s about 30 guys who think they have the support and clout of Republicans, when in fact they don’t. Perhaps their position would be clearer if they would go ahead and call themselves something else.

      • Michael Silver says:

        There seems to be two parties in the Republican tent: The Party of Government and the Tea Party.

        Ted Cruz, et al represent the Tea Party trying to reign in an overbearing and over-controlling government. They want fiscal responsibility. They are willing to stand up against all odds, much like the Heros of the Alamo.

        Isakson and Chambliss represent the Party of Government. They seek to keep government operating and growing. When only 17% of the government was shut down, the Party of Government panicked as if the world was ending. Any attempt to shrink the role of government in our lives is to be fought, regardless of the size or efficiency.. They undercut the Tea Party efforts in every way possible and now are taking a victory lap celebrating their treachery.

        • John Konop says:

          All I ever hear from Ted is hot air no real specific cuts……He is playing you guys…..the reality is the two areas the budget is controlled and will be overwhelmed by is Medicare and military…

          The drug prescription bill alone will bk the country….We could fix it by just using VA drug pricing at a 60 percent discount to tax layers. If Ted was a real conservative why not propose that?

          We went to 2 wars with no money to pay for it. Ted has said nothing about this?

          The War on Drugs has been a massive drag on our economy……once again nothing from Ted?

          End of life cost is about 60 percent of what you spend on healthcare for your life. Ted has said nothing about end of life directives when we know many people did not even want the procedures.

          I could go on and on…..Ted blows macro smoke….no real tangible policy… is a fools parade….

        • benevolus says:

          Who is it again who is claiming the sky is falling? I heard Ted Cruz saying that more than anyone else!

          Even if all that is true Michael Silver, it is the scorched earth tactics that are anti-democratic process. If you don’t have the votes to get your way, you negotiate. If you still don’t get the votes, you have to wait until next election and try to get more votes that way. You don’t threaten to blow up the whole system because you can’t get enough votes. They are anarcho-libertarians. Besides being destructive, it is selfish and disrespectful. And arrogant. It is arrogant for somebody like Ted Cruz to think that he knows what is better for us that anybody else does. There are lots of smart people who disagree with Ted Cruz but he deceives himself and tries to deceive those around him.

          • Michael Silver says:

            The minority party in the Senate have rights. The House has a defined Constitutional role in spending and tax decisions. The tactics of non-negotiation by Obama, the Dems, and the back-stabbers in the Party of Government like Isakson and Chambliss ignored both of those important Constitutional check-and-balance principles.

            The argument that the House should acquiesce to whatever the President asks for is very dangerous for Liberty and limited government. In fact, its the very definition of a dictatorship, eg Venezuela.

            We don’t know the fallout from what is occurring today BUT, I would not be surprised if the victors today will be the substantial losers of tomorrow.

            • benevolus says:

              Obamacare has been voted on 45 times this year! THAT is the constitutional process. If you don’t have enough votes, you lose. When you get more votes, you can try again.

              And if you want to alter the budget, bring up a bill and vote on it. This other B.S. is thuggery.

          • Scott65 says:

            There is a word for the TP…and if you disagree, go look it up FASCIST. Thats not to say all those who identify are fascist, but the movement in general is fascist in the true definition of the word.
            1. no respect for national institutions
            2. highly nationalistic
            3.ready to used scorched earth tactics to achieve power
            4. having an Us vs Them mentality
            5. having the delusion that someone is taking their country away and they must fight at all costs to keep it. Fearful of change
            6. deniers of science and fact that dont fit the ideology, and work to discredit PEOPLE who bring the facts rather than facts themselves.

            These are all characteristics of a fascist movement. Its pretty plain as day the TP is heading this way if some people dont make some changes

            • pettifogger says:

              This is ridiculous.

              First, 1, 3,4,5 (sort of) and 6 are all hallmarks of the left generally. Almost all of these factors would apply to both parties with some frequency. For example:

              1) The left regularly berates traditional America, faith, concept of traditional families, etc.

              2) Obviously the left is not nationalistic, the opposite, of course.

              3) President Obama has called out individual conservatives to criticize, has ruled by executive fiat, has blatantly favored his supporters through government action, etc.

              4) Haven’t the Democrats been calling Republicans terrorists for a couple of weeks? They’ll take away your birth control! They want you to starve in the streets! Come on.

              5) I think this is true, it isn’t a delusion either.

              6) Somewhat true on the science, though you don’t think Democrats discredit people rather than facts/ideas? Try this: label yourself a Republican, get on tv, and have the audacity to state some crime stat from the FBI relating to race. Come back with your results.

              FWIW, I can’t say I’m a big proponent of the Tea Party. That said, calling them fascists, after several years of universally peaceful political action, is outright stupidity. Occupy’s tactics, on the other hand…

            • seenbetrdayz says:

              You have no idea what fascism is.

              In one paragraph we’ve got people decrying the tea party as some sort of anarchistic movement, then in another paragraph we’ve got people saying they’re fascist which requires a very strong central government working in conjunction with mega-corporations. So which is it?

              Of course, the majority of insults being hurled at the tea party are from people defending a multi-thousand page document which was written by insurance company lobbyists and enforced through a national law enforcement agency known as the IRS. —Oh, wait, that would mean . . . hmmm.

              So, let’s deny credibility where it isn’t due.

        • seekingtounderstand says:

          Ok so after we continue to fight for conservative government, we then realize that the debt is so large that the only way to pay it off is thru using our natural resources or putting all Americans in a third world poverty lifestyle for generations.

          Wake up conservatives………….they are never going to stop taking and stealing.
          Republicans want to replace you with cheaper and benevolent workers from other countries while taking away jobs and welfare/social security.
          The dems just want to destroy you by inflating our debt and making it impossible to survive on government checks like social security.
          So this is the real choice America………………………………

  5. joe says:

    “Because they are good at their jobs. ” If they were good at their jobs, things would have never gone on this long. If they were good at their jobs, we would have had a balanced budget years ago, and there would have been no reason to raise the debt limit. I hope that we can elect somebody who doesn’t suck at the job as badly as these do, but I don’t know who that is.

    • seekingtounderstand says:

      We now have a choice America
      Be replaced by third world workers and loss of welfare/social security
      vs. Dems who will keep trying to give you help but inflate it all away so you are worse off.

  6. northside101 says:

    John Konop’s remarks are refreshing amidst the many armchair quarterbacks in this column who seem to have no grip on…simple math or plain old reality. So, to lighten things up, lets go back in time and look at some important numbers:

    1921-1923: the last time Republicans had three-fifths of the total Senate (back then, 59 Republicans, 37 Democrats, 96 Total)—remember, we had 48 states back then, Alaska and Hawaii were not states til 1959). Yep, a mere 90+ years ago.

    3—number of times in the last 80-years Republicans have had 55 members in the Senate: 1997-1999, 1999-2001 and 2005-2007.

    60—Number of votes needed to pass just about anything meaningful in the Senate.

    Two-Thirds—percentage of House/Senate needed to override a presidential veto (290 in a full House, 67 in the Senate)

    332-206: The Electoral College count last year in favor of Obama.

    It should be evident as today’s wet weather that Republicans do not have—and have not had at any time since Obamacare passed—the numbers to repeal Obamacare in the House and Senate AND override a presidential veto, Not gonna happen. Republicans can scream, jump in the air, pound the podium, turn red-faced, do somersaults, preach to the choir on FOX, listen to Hannity and the often acidic Ann Coulter (Act like the discredited far-left Cynthia McKinney in her congressional career). Ain’t gonna happen. Votes not there. Obama would never agree to repeal his signature legislation. Never. Even if it cost his party the House in 2010 (and probably the rest of the decade).

    It should also be evident that a lot of the country does not share the Tea Party tactics and/or agenda. Which brings us to another set of numbers:

    21 and 257.

    21 (plus DC) represents the number of states that have voted Democratic for president at least 5 of the last 6 presidential elections, along with 257 electoral votes combined (only 270 needed to win). I doubt any of the antics of Ted Cruz and company have made it any easier for the GOP to make inroads in the blue states. As Romney found out last year, pretty hard to win the presidency when you have to take almost every swing state—not Florida OR Ohio, but Florida AND Ohio. Not Colorado OR Virginia, but Colorado and Virginia. It is easy to say “everyone thinks the same way as me” in Tom Graves’ district (73 percent Romney) or Doug Collins’ district (78 percent Romney). But you might be surprised that “everyone doesn’t think the same way” in some Republican-held districts, like Frank Wolf’s in Northern Virginia (where Romney barely led Obama last year), or Scott Riggall’s Virginia Beach district that Obama carried. Or Peter King’s on Long Island. Not every Republican represents a “deep Dixie” district. If you want to call them (the non-Dixie ones)traitors, RINOs, etc,, fine—even though Reagan once said an 80 percent Republican is not a 20 percent enemy, and you may pave the wave for a (far-left) Democratic House majority. (Speaker Pelosi again?!?)

    Also, lets look at the differences between the US House and Senate. Often in the House, the elected officials represent districts that are so politically lopsided. We see that in Georgia, whether in Doug Collins’ 78 percent Romney district or John Lewis’s 83 percent district here in Atlanta. But senators usually represent much broader constituencies. Even here in Georgia. Yeah, certainly a Republican state these days, but even here, Democrats can get 40-45 percent in statewide elections. Obama got 45 here last fall without too much effort and 47 with more efforts in 2008.. And among the 50-something Republican, probably at least a few who. felt we’d seen enough of the political equivalent of Stalingrad. Basically, if you feel that Isakson and Chambliss should just represent the so-called “majority of the majority” (say, in a 55-57 percent GOP state, that 35 want no compromise and 20-22 of that wanted last night’s deal), then yes, you have reason to be disappointed. If you believe that a senator is called to represent the entire state, not just the GOP majority, then his and Chambliss’s vote seem understandable. I’m not saying it was perfect legislation (the CR) and doubtless there was pork in there (and who knows how many legislators actually read it on such short notice).

    Finally, interesting that the battle here was basically over (roughly) $1 trillion in discretionary spending. What about the other $2.6 trillion in entitlement spending that is the real culprit with our dismal national finances? I don’t hear Ted Cruz talking about that….

    • caroline says:

      +1,000. It’s funny how I hear people scream about the minority party having rights and they should have rights unless they live in GA? Just not the right to hold everybody hostage but when Isakson does what he needs to do for EVERYBODY in the state it’s the end of the world.

      From the vantage point I see with Cruz, he did LARGE damage to the GOP nationally and put a lot of Republicans in tenuous situations. Peter King is probably going to be okay because he came right out at the beginning and said it was nonsense. The people who should be worried are the ones that are in those 45/55 GOP districts in states like Ohio where this shutdown was immensely unpopular and where IIRC the governor is unpopular and going to be up for reelection. Florida is another one where the GOP is likely to take a beating due to this and their unpopular governor.

        • Dawgfan says:

          I’ll tell you what Cruz said that I have a problem with. Hey guys, lets do do something incredibly stupid that everyone knows will fail, and then blame it on everyone but me.

        • caroline says:

          It’s nothing particular that he said. It’s his behavior. He was like George Custer at the Battle of Little Big Horn. He was leading the troops off to disaster but in the end I really don’t care. If the GOP wants to go along with someone who had no strategy for winning and chose to follow someone who was leading them into a disaster well, then that’s their choice.

          If someone came to your house and demanded your first born child and you offered them money that they wouldn’t take and everything you had and they insisted the only thing they wanted was your first born child that would be Cruz’s strategy. He only wanted Obamacare which the only thing that Obama wasn’t willing to deal on.

          • seenbetrdayz says:

            It’ll be hard to declare any victories in this fight until the votes have been counted. As they say, elections are the only polls that matter.

            Current polls don’t show the opinions of people who aren’t politically involved. Meaning, if you’ve never voted, then you aren’t likely to be contacted by polling organizations. Hence the oft-used term, ‘likely voters’, when results are published.

            However, Obamacare is going to affect those 40% or so Americans who don’t vote, or at least, haven’t voted up until this point. I’ll be very interested to see how many of them are driven to the ballot booths in 2014 and whether or not they approve or disapprove of what has transpired in this congressional session.

            I predict that Obamacare is going to create a lot of new participants in the election process.

            • caroline says:

              I think your statement about the 40% that don’t vote has faulty reasoning behind it because you are assuming it’s the same 40%. I would speculate that it isn’t the same 40% every time. There is probably a core amount in that 40% that never votes but I have seen nothing indicating what that number is.

              Well, considering that the GOP’s numbers have reached Nixonian levels nationwide I would not say that is not a good thing. You aren’t going to even have to wait until people vote to probably find out whether people like it or not. I would look to see some polling on Obamacare in KY about the summer to give you an indication.

              It seems to me that the GOP is relying on Obamacare to fail to help them win but yet seem to think that it’s going to make them lose at the same time. All in all I probably think it’s a wash where some people are going to come out better and some worse but all the falsehoods I have seen the GOP making about it really do not help them make their case.

              • seenbetrdayz says:

                But the polling is premature! Most of Obamacare has yet to go into effect for average Americans. It would be like polling on how next week is going for you. We don’t even know yet.

                Every poll taken thus far has been based mostly on what people have heard about Obamacare. And the way that it’s being pushed by the Obama administration, sure, it sounds like a great and wonderful thing. But I’d like to see some polls after March 2014.

                Well, I’d rather Nov 2014 just get here already. Obamacare may turn out to be the greatest voter drive we’ve seen in decades.

                • caroline says:

                  I said to look at polling in state like KY this coming summer. It will have been going for about 6 months at that time. You must have missed that part of my post. I know there is a lot of misinformation about it coming from Obama AND the GOP. For all the complaining about Obama not reading the bill apparently the GOP did not either. For a basis of comparison I have been in the individual insurance market and I have been in the insurance business so I know of what I speak. I live in Cherokee County. There are 39 plans to choose from if you live in Cherokee County. What we had in the individual market 5 years ago was what is now called a Kaiser Bronze Plan. We were paying 800 a month or 10K a year for that plan. It is now $544 a month. So that would be saving us approximately $250 a month however the copays were $25 and are now $60 I believe. So there’s a real life example of having insurance in the individual market before and after Obamacare. Take from that lesson whatever you want. I have talked to a lot of republicans who are completely misinformed about this kind of stuff and have explained it to them and it changed their minds even though that was not my goal. My goal was to simply give them the facts and let them decide for themselves and my personal opinion is that is what the GOP seems to be deathly afraid of. They do not want people to find out that they have been trying to snooker them.

          • Harry says:

            Cruz merely articulated the GOP view that Obamacare is bad legislation for the economy and people of this country. Cruz knew that the media (controlled by 6 big corporations who have an incestuous relationship with the Democrats) would make him out the negative guy, but he is correct and will be vindicated by subsequent developments. Cruz had to draw a line in the sand and make clear our opposition so that in the future Obama will not be able to claim that the real GOP supported it. Yes, we will win the war of public opinion and eventually repeal.

                • caroline says:

                  That does not surprise me. Jim DeMint likes being General Custer. This has been the GOP strategy for quite a while: keep trying the same thing that did not work in the first place.

                  • Harry says:

                    So maybe you can share with us your strategy for dealing with the financial insolvency of the country. And don’t say we can print our way out of it…that won’t work.

                    • John Konop says:

                      Her is my top 9 starter program, what do you think?

                      1) End War on Drugs…… Billions in savings while increasing job production ie people working and paying taxes over us spending over a 100k a year housing them………

                      2) Let VA drug prices be used for health exchanges, veterans family members and government workers ie about 60% savings

                      3) Require end of life living wills ie end of life directive, for people filing taxes or receive any type of government entitlement, assistance……Since 60% of a person’s healthcare is spent on last 6 months of your life, and many do not want the procedures major savings…..

                      4) Use the CPI for SS… saves a lot of money……

                      5) Put phones in county emergency rooms for dial a doc for non emergency care for uninsured and insured ie massive savings for healthcare….emergency rooms way more expensive way to treat non emergencies…..Also most people would learn the number and would rather call than go to emergency room.

                      6) Put in real fraud reforms for Medicare/SS……

                      7) Promote common sense sentencing in our courts vs. zero tolerance ie massive savings and once again people working over us spending money on housing them… 100k per prisoner for housing pluss they pay taxes when working…..

                      8) Require all health exchanges to have a HSA option ie allows individuals and small businesses to group together and self insure like large corporations do many times. It saves about 20 percent on healthcare cost, the group would buy catastrophic insurance only, and charge itself the premiums just like an insurance company. Indiana Governor Mike Pence already demonstrated massive savings on this idea in his state with this idea. Also many major companies do this today for the above savings up to 20%.

                      9) End the policemen of the world military strategy, allowing a 10 percent cut in military spending.

                    • caroline says:

                      And I would add to John’s suggestion to let more nurse practioners go to rural areas and practice. This would cause a big fight with the AMA but would be worth it. A win/win for everybody.

                      Close a lot of the overseas military bases too. I mean do we really still need bases in Great Britain?

      • seekingtounderstand says:

        Don’t worry Caroline: The republicans will push to replace American workers with cheaper labor. So America will reach for Dems who at least pretends to care while they inflate your ability to afford to live away as the debt expands.

        • caroline says:

          Well, the cheap labor model is a HUGE problem in this country and the crux of a lot of our problems. But in all honesty do you really believe the GOP cares about spending? I don’t. Look no further than when they controlled all three branches of the government.

  7. Richard says:

    The disappointing thing about the shutdown was that it accomplished nothing but make it more likely that Democrats keep the Senate and perhaps even gain the House in the next election. Cruz is a narcissist, who can’t play long ball. I don’t disagree with his basic belief, nor that of the folks that believe Obamacare will be a disaster for this country, but no thinking, responsible person thought this would end any other way than it did. I sort of liked Cruz until this antic, but now I wouldn’t vote for him to replace Hank Johnson; at least Hank is good for laughs.

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