How local lawmakers voted on the debt ceiling bill

August 1, 2011 7:08:18 PM PDT
The House of Representatives passed a debt ceiling bill; 95 Democrats voted yes, including many from the Bay Area.

This was a compromise bill, but it is being seen in Washington D.C. as a largely Republican victory. If it were a car, think of it as a Republican engine and transmission with some Democratic options on the side. Nevertheless, the leader of the Democrats in the House was on board.

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-San Francisco, urged her colleagues to vote yes.

"We cannot allow our seniors and veterans to be caught in the collateral damage of the assault on the middle class," said Pelosi.

Pelosi voted for raising the debt ceiling. Rep. Lynn Woolsey, D-Santa Rosa, voted no.

"This is not a balanced approach to controlling spending, it doesn't ask for shared sacrifice, it puts virtually the entire burden on working families and the middle class," said Woolsey.

Here is how the Bay Area delegation voted, as far as we've been able to confirm. There were a lot of no votes: Rep. Mike Honda, D-San Jose, Rep. Pete Stark, D-Fremont, Rep. Jerry McNerney, D-Pleasanton, Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, and Rep. George Miller, D-Concord.

However, there was a split with Pelosi, Rep. John Garamendi, D-Walnut Grove, Rep. Jackie Speier, D-San Mateo, Rep. Mike Thompson, D-Napa, and Rep. Anna Eshoo, D-Palo Alto, voting yes.

"I voted yes for the big, major reason and that is that I don't believe that the United States of America could ever go into default," said Eshoo.

"Now there's one big, overriding issue which is uncertain and that is which is, what's the affect of these cuts in terms of the economy?" said ABC7 political analyst Bruce Cain, Ph.D.

If the economy continues to struggle because of the government spending cuts, President Barack Obama could find his re-election chances evaporating.

Harley Shaiken is an expert on labor in the economy at U.C. Berkeley. He said, "I think longer term this measure could derail the economy. Essentially by slashing government, we are cutting jobs at a point where the economy will likely remain fragile even several years down the road, when most of this clicks in."

However, chair of the Democratic Party John Burton, in California said the president's base won't be discouraged by what happened on Monday, they'll be energized.

"Well next year they've seen a taste of what Republicans can do to the government and to the country and they will work harder," said Burton.

The Senate plans to vote on the debt ceiling on Tuesday. Those on Capitol Hill said that it will be far less dramatic than what we witnessed on Monday in the House.


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