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Letter to the House Ways and Means Committee on Full Faith and Credit Act

April 24, 2013

Dear Representative: 

On behalf of the more than 3 million members of the National Education Association (NEA), we urge you to VOTE NO on the expected substitute from Chairman Camp to the Full Faith and Credit Act (H.R. 807) scheduled for markup tomorrow and to the underlying bill. 

The expected replacement amendment has a very clear purpose — allowing the US government to default on its obligations during the upcoming debt ceiling negotiations.  The consequences of a default would reverberate across our economy affecting every American — higher interest rates, investors fleeing the US market and broad economic uncertainty.  

Educators understand that Congress must work to ensure America’s long-term economic prosperity and that we must address the nation’s serious fiscal challenges.  But, raising the debt ceiling to pay bills already incurred should not be negotiable, and certainly should not be held hostage for cuts to programs that serve everyday Americans.  We need to learn from the lessons of 2011.  Political brinksmanship with the debt ceiling caused uncertainty on Wall Street, the US government’s credit rating was downgraded, and we saw increases in borrowing costs to the tune of $1.3 billion according to a report from the Government Accountability Office.   

America is not a deadbeat nation and we must be responsible and raise the debt ceiling to pay our obligations.  Our nation’s fiscal stability must be assured in order to address the challenges ahead. We urge all elected officials to consider the credibility and stability of the United States economy, the interests of its people, and the core values of fairness and equal opportunity that make America great.  

Again, we urge you to VOTE NO on this legislation.   

Sincerely, 

Mary Kusler
Director of Government Relations