POLITICS

Virginia politicians split over debt ceiling

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Two Virginia politicians expressed opposing views on a plan to raise the debt limit backed by Republican House Speaker John Boehner.

Congressman Jim Moran, a Northern Virginia Democrat, said he would vote against the plan put forth by Boehner. The state's Republican governor urged Virginia's congressional delegation to support the bill.

"One of the major flaws in Speaker Boehner's bill is that it would expire at Christmastime, just six months from now. Ratings agencies have expressed deep concern about this short-term plan, stating it would result in a downgrade of our nation's credit rating from the gold standard AAA to AA,” Moran said in a statement.

Moran said the debt ceiling needs to be raised because a default would increase the debt by adding to borrowing costs.

"Despite the wishful thinking of some in Congress, the United States must meet our debt obligations by increasing the debt ceiling,” Moran said. He said he supports the Democratic-backed plan in the Senate.

As opposed to Moran, Republican Virginia Governor Bob McDonnell urged Congress - particularly Virginia's delegation - to coalesce behind Boehner's debt ceiling bill in the frightful final days before the nation defaults on its bills.

In a press statement, McDonnell said the Boehner plan achieves the goal of cutting spending without raising taxes and will avert an Aug. 2 financial crisis by raising the federal government's $14.3 trillion borrowing limit.

McDonnell concluded the brief statement by saying: "I urge the members of Congress, including Virginia's delegation, to vote in support of this measure."

The popular Virginia conservative often mentioned as a 2012 GOP vice presidential running mate acted as Boehner struggled to solidify support among reluctant conservatives in his own caucus for his last-ditch effort to avoid default.

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