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Markey Stands Against Debt Plan, Rips Tea Party

"Rather than engaging in a sensible, bipartisan process, the inflexible, ideology-fueled Republican Party and its extreme Tea Party faction has forced the country into a choice that should never have been necessary." - Rep. Ed Markey, D-Massachusetts

The debt ceiling plan passed by the House of Representatives Monday night was fueled by "ideology-fueled Republican Party and its extreme Tea Party faction," according to Ed Markey, a Democrat who represents Melrose in the House.

“We are being forced to choose between the first default in our country’s history or trillions in cuts in investments that create jobs and benefit the lives of countless Americans across the country," Markey said in a statement Tuesday morning.

Markey, a representative for Massachusetts 7th district, was in the minority of his colleagues nationwide in voting against the proposal, as the bill passed the house by a 269-161 margin Monday night. But the majority of Massachusetts legislators voted against the bill.

Representatives John Tierney, Barney Frank, Michael Capuano, James McGovern, Richard Neal, and John Oliver, all Democrats, joined Markey in voting against the bill. Stephen Lynch, Bill Keating and Nikki Tsongas, also Democrats, voted in favor of the legislation.

The house failed to act in a bi-partisan manner in passing the plan, Markey said, blaming the Tea Party for pressuring legislators to either approve a plan that calls for deep cuts or default on loans.

“Fulfilling our country’s financial obligations is a fundamental responsibility, and both political parties have met this responsibility by raising the debt ceiling 75 times over the years without attaching conditions," Markey said. "But rather than engaging in a sensible, bipartisan process, the inflexible, ideology-fueled Republican Party and its extreme Tea Party faction has forced the country into a choice that should never have been necessary."

Tsongas, a Democrat from Lowell, said the bill was not was she wanted, but voted in support of it anyway.

The bill calls for a bi-partisan committee to create a larger deficit reduction plan. Through that process, Tsongas said she hoped the government could close tax loopholes for corporations and breaks for oil companies.

"It is my hope that with the passage of this measure to avert economic disaster, we can begin the critical task of rebuilding our economy and creating jobs for the future,” Tsongas said in a statement.

The Senate approved the bill by a 74-26 vote Tuesday afternoon, passing it to President Barack Obama.

For national coverage on the debt ceiling debate, visit Huffington Post.

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