Senator Carper Statement on the Fiscal Responsibility Act

U.S. Senator Tom Carper (D-Del.), Chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, today issued the following statement after voting for the Fiscal Responsibility Act, which passed the Senate by a vote of 63-36.

“I am relieved that President Biden was able to reach a bipartisan compromise to prevent a catastrophic default. Defaulting on our debt — for the first time in our nation’s history — could have resulted in an economic recession, millions of jobs lost, devastated retirement accounts, and much more. Failure was not an option.

“While I am glad that we have met our constitutional responsibility to pay our nation’s bills, it is important to note that this was a manufactured crisis that endangered America’s credit. Just like in 2011 and 2013, House Republicans tried to hold our economy hostage in exchange for draconian budget cuts to health care, education, and veterans’ benefits. President Biden protected against devastating cuts that would have hurt Delaware families, raised costs, and hindered economic growth. Importantly, this deal preserves many legislative accomplishments that I helped shepherd through last Congress, including historic investments in the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the Inflation Reduction Act to address the threat of climate change.

“Like all compromises, this deal is not everything I had hoped for. I have serious concerns about the cuts in the legislation to the Internal Revenue Service’s budget. These cuts actually increase our deficit and jeopardize the agency’s efforts to provide best-in-class customer service and ensure the wealthiest Americans pay the taxes they legally owe. In addition, I am disappointed that the bill contains provisions to streamline permitting for the Mountain Valley Pipeline. I look forward to working with the Biden administration on solutions to advance clean energy generation and transmission while also upholding our nation’s bedrock environmental protections.

“At the end of the day, the President safeguarded our core priorities and the historic economic progress we have made over the past two years. We have avoided default and protected the full faith and credit of the United States.”