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Sen. Tom Coburn votes against deal to reopen government, extend debt ceiling

by Chris Casteel Modified: October 16, 2013 at 9:25 pm •  Published: October 16, 2013

The Senate voted 81-18 on Wednesday night to fund the government through Jan. 15 and raise the nation’s debt ceiling through Feb. 7. Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Muskogee, voted against the bill; Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Tulsa, is recovering from heart surgery and missed the vote.
Coburn said, “Washington doesn’t need short-term budget and debt limit extensions as much as we need a long-term spending addiction recovery plan. The American people should do what any responsible parent would do if their adolescent child couldn’t handle the responsibility of a credit card. We should cut up the credit card and live within our means.
“With this agreement, the hard decisions we have to make have only been put off for another day, when our fiscal problems will be bigger and more painful to solve. It’s time to make tough choices now.”
Inhofe issued this statement:
“Since President Obama came into office, he has signed into law a costly 20,000 page health care law, authored a $787 billion stimulus, and raised the debt ceiling now six times. He has taken care of his pet projects while letting the most foundational elements of the Constitution — from budgeting to national security — sit on the back burner.
“Because of his leadership, we have operated from one crisis to the next. It happened once again when he and Majority Leader Reid held Congress hostage with the debt ceiling in order to forge a deal that falls short of anything worthy of conservative support. It’s time this ends and my colleagues face the overdue discussion on the scope and size of federal government. The federal government is growing more invasive than our Founding Fathers ever intended; our national debt is slated to skyrocket to $25 trillion in the next decade; and the President’s fiscal recklessness is disarming America and making our national security more vulnerable than ever before.
“I look forward to my soon return to continue this debate and ensure this crucial discussion about our nation’s future remains in the forefront of funding decisions.”

by Chris Casteel
Washington Bureau
Chris Casteel began working for The Oklahoman's Norman bureau in 1982 while a student at the University of Oklahoma. After covering the police beat, federal courts and the state Legislature in Oklahoma City, he moved to Washington in 1990, where...
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