SoCal Split Over Who To Blame As US Nears Debt Default

LOS ANGELES (CBS) — Despite calls from Washington for a swift resolution to the fight over raising the U.S. debt limit, there seems to be just as much disagreement in the Southland as there is on Capitol Hill.

Speeches from both President Obama and Speaker of the House John Boehner appeared to drive constituents to contact their representatives on Tuesday as congressional officials reported the House switchboard nearing inbound call capacity and websites also experiencing heavy traffic, according to the Associated Press.

And while it’s not yet clear whether the callers are siding with the White House or Congress, KNX 1070’s John Brooks reports people on the street aren’t shying away from giving their own opinion.

Boehner’s staunch opposition to tax hikes even on the nation’s wealthiest individuals and corporations found at least one local supporter.

“Cut the debt, and no more spending, and cut every department by 10 percent,” said one man.

Since 2008, the effective tax rates for the highest income taxpayers had dropped to their lowest levels in at least half a century.

Another voter said GOP leaders are to blame for obstructing any possible agreement.

“It’s got to be fair and balanced,” he said. “When you go to the table not planning on compromising, you won’t make a deal.”

A poll last week from CBS News found that 71 percent of Americans disapprove of the Republicans’ handling of the debt-ceiling negotiations.

One Democratic voter even accused Republicans of being racially-motivated in their opposition to Obama’s proposals.

“They mad because Obama’s in the White House and he black,” he said. “They don’t like that, so they telling him what to do.”

Regardless of the political fallout from the fight on Capitol Hill, one lawmaker is warning of very real economic consequences for the nation.

California Senator Barbara Boxer told KNX 1070 that any failure to avert a U.S. default could make it more difficult for the federal government to monetize its debt.

“We’re a capitalistic society, and what happens is if we default, we’re going to have raise interest rates on the Treasury bonds in order to sell them.”


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