Amendment Text: H.Amdt.61 — 113th Congress (2013-2014)

There is one version of the amendment.

Shown Here:
Amendment as Offered (05/09/2013)

This Amendment appears on page H2546 in the following article from the Congressional Record.


[Pages H2539-H2553]
From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov]




                              {time}  0920
                       FULL FAITH AND CREDIT ACT

  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, pursuant to House Resolution 202, I call up 
the bill (H.R. 807) to require that the Government prioritize all 
obligations on the debt held by the public in the event that the debt 
limit is reached, and ask for its immediate consideration.
  The Clerk read the title of the bill.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore (Mrs. Foxx). Pursuant to House Resolution 
202, the amendment in the nature of a substitute recommended by the 
Committee on Ways and Means, printed in the bill, is adopted. The bill, 
as amended, is considered read.
  The text of the bill, as amended, is as follows:

                                H.R. 807

       Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of 
     the United States of America in Congress assembled,

     SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

       This Act may be cited as the ``Full Faith and Credit Act''.

     SEC. 2. PAYMENT OF PRINCIPAL AND INTEREST ON PUBLIC DEBT AND 
                   SOCIAL SECURITY TRUST FUNDS.

       (a) In General.--In the event that the debt of the United 
     States Government, as defined in section 3101 of title 31, 
     United States Code, reaches the statutory limit, the 
     Secretary of the Treasury shall, in addition to any other 
     authority provided by law, issue obligations under chapter 31 
     of title 31, United States Code, to pay with legal tender, 
     and solely for the purpose of paying, the principal and 
     interest on obligations of the United States described in 
     subsection (b) after the date of the enactment of this Act.
       (b) Obligations Described.--For purposes of this 
     subsection, obligations described in this subsection are 
     obligations which are--
       (1) held by the public, or
       (2) held by the Old-Age and Survivors Insurance Trust Fund 
     and Disability Insurance Trust Fund.
       (c) Obligations Exempt From Public Debt Limit.--Obligations 
     issued under subsection (a) shall not be taken into account 
     in applying the limitation in section 3101(b) of title 31, 
     United States Code, to the extent that such obligation would 
     otherwise cause the limitation in section 3101(b) of title 
     31, United States Code, to be exceeded.
       (d) Report on Certain Actions.--
       (1) In general.--If, after the date of the enactment of 
     this Act, the Secretary of the Treasury exercises his 
     authority under subsection (a), the Secretary shall 
     thereafter submit a report each week providing an accounting 
     relating to--
       (A) the principal on mature obligations and interest that 
     is due or accrued of the United States, and
       (B) any obligations issued pursuant to subsection (a).
       (2) Submission.--The report required by paragraph (1) shall 
     be submitted to the Committee on Ways and Means of the House 
     of Representatives and the Committee on Finance of the 
     Senate.
       (3) Termination.--The report requirement under paragraph 
     (1) shall cease to apply after the date of the enactment of 
     the first increase in the limitation in section 3101(b), 
     United States Code, after the date of the enactment of this 
     Act.

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. After 1 hour of debate on the bill, as 
amended, it shall be in order to consider the further amendment printed 
in House Report 113-52, if offered by the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. 
Camp) or his designee, which shall be considered read and shall be 
separately debatable for 10 minutes equally divided and controlled by 
the proponent and an opponent.
  The gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Camp) and the gentleman from 
Michigan (Mr. Levin) each will control 30 minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Camp).


                             General Leave

  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that all Members 
have 5 legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks and 
to include extraneous material on H.R. 807.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of the 
gentleman from Michigan?
  There was no objection.
  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  I rise today in support of H.R. 807, the Full Faith and Credit Act. 
This legislation credibly and permanently removes the threat of default 
on a U.S. debt payment and ensures that Social Security benefits are 
paid in full and on time.
  The bill is really quite simple: it requires the Treasury Department 
to issue debt not subject to the statutory limit to make principal and 
interest payments. And here are the facts about who holds that debt: 
American families and businesses hold the overwhelming majority of U.S. 
debt--teacher pension funds, individual Americans, our military 
retirement fund, and the list goes on and on. So by ensuring that 
Treasury has the ability to honor our debt obligations, we are in fact 
ensuring Americans will be paid.
  This legislation is the first step in protecting our credit rating. 
Two major credit rating agencies--Standard and Poor's and Moody's--have 
indicated that they differentiate between debt and other payments when 
determining whether or not to review our credit rating. To that end, 
this bill specifically addresses the default on U.S.

[[Page H2540]]

debt obligations that these agencies have identified.
  Additionally, Standard & Poor's was crystal clear as to why it 
downgraded the U.S. credit rating following the debt negotiations in 
the summer of 2011, and I quote:

       The downgrade reflects our opinion that the fiscal 
     consolidation plan that Congress and the administration 
     recently agreed to falls short of what, in our view, would be 
     necessary to stabilize the government's medium-term debt 
     dynamics.

  In plain English, they downgraded the U.S. credit rating because we 
have not addressed the primary drivers of our debts and deficits.
  It's nearly 2 years later, and neither the President nor 
congressional Democrats have offered a serious plan that would address 
the problems that caused the downgrade in the first place. This 
legislation places that responsibility on the Obama administration and 
encourages the President to be more involved with taming our debt, 
something Republicans have long called for.
  Some critics of this legislation have claimed that it opens the door 
for Treasury to issue new debt for new spending or that it is simply 
raising the debt limit by another means. This is categorically false. 
This bill does not increase the debt limit. Instead, under this 
legislation, Treasury loses the authority to issue debt above the limit 
if doing so creates any room under the existing old debt limit.
  Treasury may not issue new debt above the statutory limit again until 
the limit is reached. Additionally, any new debt issued to pay 
principal and interest is not exempt from the statutory limit unless 
issuing the new debt would cause Treasury to exceed the statutory 
limit.
  The American people agree, and that support transcends party lines. A 
majority, 55 percent, support requiring the government to pay the 
principal and interest on the debt before it pays for other government 
expenses. Support for the proposal is strong among Republicans, 65 
percent; Independents, 53 percent; while Democrat voters are split 
evenly between favor, 46, and opposed, 47.
  Clearly, we cannot default on our debt. The consequences of doing so 
could be very serious. A default would at the very least hinder an 
already stagnant economic recovery, and, in a worst-case scenario, lead 
the country back into a recession.

                              {time}  0930

  Failure to make a debt payment will increase our borrowing costs and 
threaten our ability to make any of the other payments we owe. If 
signed into law, this legislation would prevent such an unacceptable 
situation.
  The President and Congress must work to reduce the growing burden of 
our debt and deficits, but we must do so without imposing more tax 
increases on hardworking families and job creators. There are 
bipartisan policies we can enact to reduce wasteful Washington spending 
and preserve Social Security and Medicare for future generations.
  The Ways and Means Committee has already begun to examine those 
policies and will continue to do so over the coming months. In the 
meantime, we must act to make it clear to the American people and the 
world economy that the U.S. will not default on a debt payment. The 
legislation before us accomplishes that important goal, and I would 
urge my colleagues to join me in voting for its passage today.
  Madam Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. LEVIN. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  I wanted to state the facts here so everybody understands them. We 
have called this--as the Speaker has, in essence--Paying China First, 
and so many others, except for Social Security beneficiaries, come 
last, come next, if at all. And here's the reason: of the prioritized 
debt covered by this bill, 47 percent is foreign owned, and China 
bondholders are the largest ones of that foreign ownership.
  So, essentially, what this bill says is, okay, let's pay China and 
the other foreign bondholders first, not American troops, not disabled 
veterans, not physicians, providers who treat Medicare patients, not 
small businesses holding contract obligations from the United States, 
school lunch programs secondary, medical research, Pell grants, 
taxpayers due refunds, and, interestingly, other Federal trust funds 
holding Treasury bonds, Medicare, deposit insurance, et cetera, et 
cetera. That's the fact. That's the fact.
  So why do this? Well, it is said let's do this because of the 
importance of paying the bonds in terms of our economy and in terms of 
our bond rating.
  Let me just say a word about bond rating. Here's what Fitch has said:

       It is not assured that the Treasury would or legally could 
     prioritize debt service over its myriad of other obligations, 
     including social security payments, tax rebates, and payments 
     to contractors and employees. Arrears on such obligations 
     would not constitute a default event from a sovereign rating 
     perspective, but very likely prompt a downgrade even as debt 
     obligations continued to be met.

  It was interesting that S&P, who already downgraded us, said this:

       Still, sudden cuts that shave off, say, 6 percent of the 
     GDP-to-spending ratio would cause economic panic and could 
     affect ratings.

  So, why is this being done when a former Bush administration 
economist said the result is ``a bloody mess,'' or another Bush 
administration official said ``prioritization is impossible.'' Is the 
government really going to be in the position of withholding benefits, 
salaries, and rent contract payments in order to pay off Treasury 
bondholders?
  So why is this being done? It's not going anywhere in the Senate. The 
President opposes it. I think the reason, apparently, it's being done 
is to satisfy some within the Republican caucus or maybe to try to 
provide some leverage in terms of bargaining with the Democrats.
  This is playing with fire, though, with the economy of this country. 
Those who vote for playing with this fire are going to burn themselves. 
But I think most significantly, they're going to burn the economy of 
the United States of America.
  I've tried to figure out who the Pied Piper is of this proposition. 
It's hard to figure it out. But those who followed that Pied Piper in 
the Republican ranks, those who vote for it essentially are moving 
towards the cliff following that Pied Piper; but, worse off, it places 
this country once again and its economy in danger of going over the 
cliff. This is not only a mistaken idea, it's really a rotten one. 
Let's vote ``no.''
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, I yield myself 15 seconds.
  Since the gentleman raised the question of who holds our debt, this 
chart shows that the vast majority of our debt is held by Americans. 
That's a fact. Thirty percent of the debt is held by citizens, pension 
funds, and you go down the list. Two-thirds of our debt is held by 
Americans. We need to make sure that Americans are paid first.
  With that, I would yield 3 minutes to the distinguished gentleman 
from Texas, the chairman of the Social Security Subcommittee, Mr. 
Johnson.
  Mr. SAM JOHNSON of Texas. Madam Speaker, as I meet with my 
constituents back home, they tell me loud and clear their concerns 
about our record debt and deficits. We are nearly $17 trillion in debt. 
That comes out to about $53,000 per person.
  My constituents back home get it. They've had to make tough choices 
to live within their means and they expect Washington to do the same.
  My Republican colleagues and I have been committed to getting our 
fiscal house in order, growing our economy, and getting America back to 
work. In fact, we passed a budget that balances in 10 years. On the 
other hand, the President's and the Senate Democrats' budgets never 
balance--ever.
  Hardworking taxpayers and their children and grandchildren deserve 
better. We need to leave them a stronger and more secure America, not a 
mountain of debt.
  Madam Speaker, the bill we are considering today, the Full Faith and 
Credit Act, would require Treasury to make good on debt payments. The 
bill also enables Treasury to pay Social Security benefits to seniors, 
survivors, and those with disabilities and their families. Madam 
Speaker, let me say that again. Under this bill, seniors will get their 
checks, and those on disability will get their checks.
  Back in 1996, we passed similar legislation to H.R. 807. Then Social 
Security was getting more in revenues than it was paying out in 
benefits, so full

[[Page H2541]]

Social Security benefits could be paid without hitting the debt limit.
  Today, there aren't enough revenues to pay Social Security benefits. 
To make up the difference, Treasury has to redeem the debt it owes 
Social Security by borrowing from the public. This may cause a small 
increase in the debt, because when Treasury redeems Social Security 
IOUs, it must pay any interest accrued on that debt. Our bill exempts 
this interest from counting against the debt limit.
  Madam Speaker, according to CBO, Social Security's cash shortfall is 
projected to reach $77 billion this year. Over 10 years, Social 
Security's shortfall will total $1.3 trillion. These cash shortfalls 
are permanent and are growing each and every year.
  Madam Speaker, in closing, we owe it to the American people. In fact, 
we must come together to preserve and protect Social Security.

                              {time}  0940

  Mr. LEVIN. It is now my pleasure to yield 3 minutes to our 
distinguished whip, the gentleman from Maryland (Mr. Hoyer).
  Mr. HOYER. I thank my friend, the ranking member.
  I rise partly in sadness, wholly in disappointment, that we are 
playing this game. How sad. I tell my other friend from Michigan, his 
amendment is sad, too, I want to say. It's a device to try to get 
people to vote for a bill that has no merit by making Members' pay 
somehow present in this bill. We ought to consider things on their 
merit, not on this political gamesmanship.
  Madam Speaker, for the second time, House Republicans have decided to 
put our country at risk by defaulting on its obligations. They know 
this bill is not going anywhere. They know the President would veto it, 
and they know Republican economists think this bill makes no sense. I 
won't ask the gentleman who chairs the Ways and Means Committee his 
real view on this bill.
  This so-called ``debt prioritization'' bill mandates that, in the 
event we hit the debt limit, we will pay China first, not our 
contractors doing business with us, not our Federal employees, not 
veterans--yes, Social Security is taken care of--not our military. 
We'll pay China first. That's what this bill says. No major creditor in 
this country would have a debt prioritization. Now, the secondary 
lenders and tertiary lenders, yes, have prioritization, but no major 
lender, no big corporation. They say, if we incur a debt, we'll pay 
it--not we'll pay this one first and you second or third or fourth. 
We'll pay China first and other creditors before we pay our troops, 
seniors, health care and veterans benefits. Yes, you've made an 
exemption for Social Security, not in the original bill, but 
politically that was too hot to handle, so you added Social Security.
  Just yesterday, Speaker Boehner admitted that this bill means the 
United States of America will voluntarily act like a bankrupt 
corporation and pay China before we pay our troops. How sad. How 
patently political. How transparent that we are trying to give a fig 
leaf so that we can play around with the national debt. Ronald Reagan 
would be deeply disappointed, and he expressed that.
  Speaker Boehner said:

       Those who have loaned us money, like in any other 
     proceeding . . . the bondholders usually get paid first. The 
     same thing here--pay China first.

  This partisan bill is not a feasible solution to our debt problem, 
and even Republicans recognize this won't work.
  Tony Fratto, a former Bush administration spokesman on economic 
policy--this is a Republican spokesman--said:

       Prioritization is impossible. Is the government really 
     going to be in the position of withholding benefits, 
     salaries, rent, contract payments, et cetera, in order to pay 
     off Treasury bondholders? That would be a political 
     catastrophe.

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. LEVIN. I yield the gentleman an additional 1 minute.
  Mr. HOYER. Former Bush chief economic adviser Keith Hennessey--this 
is an economic adviser, not a spokesperson--said this:

       If the U.S. Government legally commits to paying someone a 
     benefit or agrees to pay a firm for a good or a service, the 
     U.S. Government should fulfill that agreement in a timely 
     fashion. To do otherwise is taking the first step to becoming 
     a banana republic.

  That's Hennessey, not Hoyer, not a Democrat. That's a Bush economic 
adviser.
  Madam Speaker, we should not be admitting defeat and ranking the 
losers as this bill would do. Instead of choosing to pay China or any 
other holder of our debt before we pay our troops--and we ought to pay 
them, and we ought to pay them on time, but that's not the issue. The 
issue is the United States of America, the most creditworthy Nation on 
Earth, ought to pay all its debt in a timely fashion--all--not 
prioritize--all--across the board. For our wounded veterans and for the 
seniors who have worked hard to build this country, we should be 
working to fix the problem by coming to a consensus on a big and 
balanced deal to reduce our deficit, including tax reform, which the 
chairman is so assiduously seeking.
  Playing politically motivated games with the creditworthiness of the 
United States will only risk another downgrade.
  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, at this time, I yield 2 minutes to a 
distinguished member of the Ways and Means Committee, the gentleman 
from Indiana (Mr. Young).
  Mr. YOUNG of Indiana. Madam Speaker, I rise in support of the Full 
Faith and Credit Act.
  Now, much has been said about how ridiculous it is that we find 
ourselves going through this debt limit routine so darned often, but 
this limit exists in order to induce this body to reflect on the folly 
of our mindless borrow-and-spend practices. Such reflection ought to 
lead us to serious debate and even to cooperation. It presents an 
opportunity for public servants to engage in thoughtful, respectful 
dialogue and to craft long-term solutions.
  As we approach the limit for the third time in my 2\1/2\ years here, 
we have an opportunity to work together and finally make our largest 
programs of government sustainable. We have an opportunity to work 
together and finally tackle long-neglected issues like tax reform so 
that jobs and personal incomes can grow more quickly.
  The Full Faith and Credit Act protects and advances such 
opportunities for Congress to accomplish big things, and it does this 
simply by removing the specter of default from the table altogether. No 
one is contemplating default over our Nation's obligations. America 
will always and forever pay its bills, and the Full Faith and Credit 
Act makes this crystal clear--by making default impossible.
  Our support for this act simply cannot and should not be regarded as 
ideological or partisan, so I respectfully call on every one of my good 
colleagues, Republican and Democrat, to support this commonsense bill, 
to take default off the table, and to put the focus squarely on dealing 
with our real challenges. Let's harness this opportunity of an 
approaching borrowing limit to come together as problem solvers.
  Mr. LEVIN. I yield myself 10 seconds.
  Now, this bill not only contemplates default--it plans for it. 
Default is default is default.
  I yield 1\1/2\ minutes to the distinguished former chairman of our 
committee, the gentleman from New York (Mr. Rangel).
  (Mr. RANGEL asked and was given permission to revise and extend his 
remarks.)
  Mr. RANGEL. I heard the last speaker, but there is no question in my 
mind that when a person from the other side said that the Republican 
Party's first priority is not the salvation of our country but to stop 
Barack Obama, I didn't take him too seriously after the election; but I 
see the campaign continues. As a political veteran, I understand that; 
but let me make it clear what we are doing today.
  I had a friend who was deeply in debt. He owed so much money that he 
just knew he couldn't pay all of his creditors. Now, it was nowhere 
near $14 trillion, but it was a lot. The creditors harassed him day in 
and day out, telling him he had to make these payments. Finally, he got 
annoyed, he got angry, and he called his creditors and told them, If 
you keep harassing me, I will not put your name in the hat, because 
every month I put all of my creditors' bills into a hat; but the way 
you are treating me--calling the job, harassing me at home--your name 
will not go into the hat.

[[Page H2542]]

  Now, that's pretty poor policy, I would think, but if I understand 
this correctly, we are telling our creditors that certain names will be 
in that hat and that other people will not be in that hat.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. LEVIN. I yield the gentleman an additional 30 seconds.
  Mr. RANGEL. So what names go into the hat?
  Communist China goes into the hat. Iran and Venezuela go into the 
hat. Saudi Arabia goes into the hat. Russia goes into the hat.
  Who's outside the hat?
  Disabled veterans are out of the hat, and health providers are out of 
the hat. A lot of people who deserve to be considered as creditors to 
protect full faith and credit are out of the hat.
  This is bad for my friend--it's worse for our country--and this is 
not the way those people to whom we owe money should be treated. 
America is greater than that.

                              {time}  0950

  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, I yield to the gentleman from Tennessee (Mr. 
Duncan) for the purpose of a unanimous consent request.
  (Mr. DUNCAN of Tennessee asked and was given permission to revise and 
extend his remarks.)
  Mr. DUNCAN of Tennessee. Madam Speaker, I rise in support of this 
legislation and commend Chairman Camp and Mr. McClintock.
  The Full Faith and Credit Act authorizes the Treasury Secretary to 
make only the principal and interest payments on our national debt if 
the United States reaches its current national debt limit of more than 
$16.4 trillion. The legislation also holds harmless Social Security 
benefits and requires a weekly report from the Treasury Department 
regarding the interest and principles payments it has made due to our 
ever-growing national debt.
  As almost everyone knows, our national debt is more than $16.4 
trillion, a number that is mind boggling and almost unimaginable. Our 
Federal Government has grown so large that trying to save a nickel for 
every dollar we spend is difficult.
  To put $16.4 trillion in perspective, this equates to more than 
$111,500 in debt per taxpayer. If you stacked $16.4 trillion in one 
dollar bills, it would stack to the moon 4 times.
  If we fail to get our spending under control, it will not just be our 
children and grandchildren who will suffer but everyone hoping to 
retire in five to ten years as well. If we continue on this path, we 
will soon be printing so much money that pensions will be worth very 
little.
  In fact, the non-partisan Congressional Budget Office released a 
report on February 5th of this year projecting the United States will 
be making a total of more than $224 billion in interest payments on our 
national debt. By 2023 it is estimated we will be making $857 billion 
in interest payments on our national debt, almost quadrupling our 
yearly interest payment.
  This legislation is a thoughtful, creative way to not dig ourselves 
further into this hole. We cannot continue our reckless spending ways 
and expect our creditors to continue funding a Nation that borrows 
money just to make its own interest payments.
  Mr. CAMP. At this time, I yield 5 minutes to the sponsor of the bill, 
the distinguished gentleman from California (Mr. McClintock).
  Mr. McCLINTOCK. Madam Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  I had hoped that amidst all the controversies that grip Congress, 
certainly we should at least be able to agree that the full faith and 
credit of the United States should not hang in the balance every time 
there's a fiscal controversy in Washington. I also want to thank 
Chairman Camp and his Ways and Means Committee for revisions that make 
this solution much simpler and more practical than the original draft.
  Madam Speaker, this bill simply guarantees that the sovereign debt of 
the United States Government will be paid in full and on time under any 
circumstances.
  Most States have had similar provisions to guarantee their debt in 
their laws or constitutions for generations. Last year, in testimony to 
the Senate, Ben Bernanke praised these State provisions for maintaining 
confidence in their bonds. He told our House Budget Committee that a 
similar measure at the Federal level would help to protect us against a 
sovereign default, which he called a ``very high priority.''
  And yet, this President and his followers in Congress, who have taken 
our Nation on the biggest borrowing binge in its history--who've run up 
more debt than almost all of his predecessors put together--oppose this 
commonsense measure to strengthen the credit upon which that debt 
depends.
  This bill tells credit markets that even in the event of an impasse 
on the debt limit, their loans to this government are absolutely safe.
  The Democrats have raised three arguments in opposition. First, the 
whip just said that guaranteeing the Nation's sovereign debt is just an 
excuse for not paying our other bills. What utter nonsense. I challenge 
him to name one Member of Congress who has ever suggested that this 
measure is an acceptable substitute for not paying our other bills. Do 
they actually suggest that all these other States that have guaranteed 
their sovereign debts for generations have ever used these guarantees 
as an excuse not to pay their other bills?
  On the contrary, by providing clear and unambiguous mandates to 
protect their credit first, they actually support and maintain their 
ability to pay for all of their other obligations.
  The second argument that we have heard ad nauseam is that this bill 
will pay China before it pays our troops. Well, I would remind them, as 
the chairman said, that more than half of our debt is actually held by 
Americans, often by American pension funds. China holds just 11 
percent. So this measure actually protects Americans far more than the 
Chinese.
  But whether our loans come from China or from grandma's pension fund, 
without the Nation's credit, we cannot pay our troops or any of our 
other obligations.
  We are borrowing a quarter of every dollar that we spend, and under 
this administration we have amassed a debt that is now larger than our 
Nation's entire economy. Our Nation's credit now carries a greater 
strain and burden than it ever has before. This measure strengthens our 
credit by guaranteeing that our sovereign debt will be paid in full and 
on time.
  Perhaps the most bizarre argument that we've heard is that by 
guaranteeing the Nation's credit, we actually undermine it and risk 
another downgrade in our credit rating. After all, as the ranking 
member said, a downgrade followed the last debt debate in Congress.
  Here are the facts: Standard & Poor's officials had warned for months 
that Congress had to reduce the projected 10-year deficit by $4 
trillion in order to maintain its AAA credit rating. Because of 
Democratic intransigence, this Congress could only reduce it by $1.2 
trillion. So we lost the rating. Facts are indeed stubborn things.
  But the opponents are correct in one point--that several officials 
did express a concern that the impasse could have caused a default in 
the Nation's sovereign debt. That is precisely what this measure would 
protect us from in the future.
  No one advocates that the government delay paying any of our bills, 
and this legislation does no such thing. Indeed, this legislation 
protects our ability to pay all of our other bills because paying those 
bills depends on maintaining the Nation's credit.
  Given the precarious state of our Nation's finances, principled 
disputes over how the debt limit is addressed are going to happen from 
time to time. Just a few years ago, then-Senator Barack Obama 
vigorously opposed an increase in the debt limit that was sought by the 
Bush administration.
  When these controversies erupt, as they inevitably do in a free 
society, it is imperative that credit markets are supremely confident 
that their loans to the United States are secure. That's what this bill 
does.
  For once, let us set aside all this partisan posturing and act in the 
Nation's interest.
  Mr. LEVIN. Madam Speaker, I yield myself 15 seconds.
  I want the record to be clear: of the public debt prioritized by this 
bill, foreign holders own 47 percent and China holds 22 percent of 
that.
  I now yield 1\1/2\ minutes to another distinguished member of the 
Ways and Means Committee, Mr. McDermott.
  (Mr. McDERMOTT asked and was given permission to revise and extend 
his remarks.)
  Mr. McDERMOTT. Madam Speaker, we haven't done anything in this House 
all week, and here we are working on a

[[Page H2543]]

plan on how the government can default on its debts. That's what this 
is really all about.
  It reminds me of the derivation of the word ``bedlam.''
  Bedlam was a large mental hospital in the middle of London. It was 
really called ``Bethlehem,'' but people locally called it ``Bedlam.'' 
This is a policy that came out of bedlam and will create bedlam.
  If we don't pay our debts, we are going to create problems in our own 
country, as well as in the world economic system.
  If you want to lose the United States dollar as the currency that is 
used by the world, start by not paying your debts. Everybody will say, 
Why do we want a dollar? Those folks don't pay. That's what you're 
creating--bedlam--here today.
  I urge everyone to vote ``no.''
  Mr. CAMP. At this time, I yield 2 minutes to a distinguished member 
of the Ways and Means Committee, Dr. Boustany.
  Mr. BOUSTANY. Madam Speaker, from the very origins of this country, 
the very beginnings, this country has always made good on its sovereign 
debt.
  Let me be clear what this bill does. It ensures that the United 
States shall never default on its sovereign debt.
  What does it not do? It's not a solution to the debt problem. We have 
a serious long-term liability problem in this country and a failure by 
our colleagues on the other side to recognize that we have to deal with 
this. Simply raising taxes ad nauseam is not a solution. We need to 
come to a real solution so that seniors are not left behind on their 
Medicare benefits and Social Security is taken care of.
  What does it not do? It's not a pay China first bill. China's 
holdings are less than 8 percent, and the ranking member's figures were 
wrong because he failed to account for the Social Security trust fund 
in that calculation. What we have used are the accurate figures from 
the U.S. Department of the Treasury.
  What does it not do? It does not authorize new spending and new debt. 
This bill just simply says the United States shall always make good on 
its sovereign debt. It doesn't provide a solution to the long-term 
problem. We've got to solve those problems. We need to come together 
and come up with solutions for the longer-term liability with Medicare 
and all the other spending programs that are bankrupting this country.
  It's been said that the national debt of the United States is a 
threat to our national security in the long run. We need real long-term 
solutions and not demagoguery and not disingenuous arguments.
  The language is very clear. We have seen what the language is in 
these credit rating agencies as they did this downgrade. It was 
basically a failure of Congress to come together and work with the 
administration to come up with a real long-term plan. That is the 
issue.
  The United States will not default on its debt, and this provides an 
extra tool for Treasury.

                              {time}  1000

  Mr. LEVIN. I now yield 1\1/2\ minutes to the gentleman from Georgia 
(Mr. Lewis), another very distinguished member of our committee.
  Mr. LEWIS. Madam Speaker, I want to thank my friend, Mr. Levin, for 
yielding.
  Madam Speaker, I rise in strong opposition to the Pay China First 
Act. We are the United States of America, and we pay our bills. Madam 
Speaker, I cannot believe that this body would even entertain or 
consider a bill that puts the Social Security check of 56 million 
seniors and people after China. How can we justify putting 2 million 
American military personnel, many of whom are in harm's way, after 
China? That is not right. That is not fair. As a Congress, we can do 
better, much better.
  Let me be crystal clear. Default is not an option. The United States 
of America pays all of its bills as they come due. This is the American 
way.
  Let's stop playing games and do what is right; do what is just; do 
what is fair. Let's do what every American citizen has to do, pay our 
debts. I urge each and every one of my colleagues to vote ``no'' on the 
Pay China First Act. We have a moral obligation to do what is right.
  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from 
Arkansas (Mr. Griffin), a distinguish member of the Ways and Means 
Committee.
  Mr. GRIFFIN of Arkansas. Madam Speaker, I thank the chairman.
  I think it is important to say first and foremost that no matter how 
passionate you are, no matter how loud you scream, it doesn't convert 
nonsense to facts. The point is China's debt holdings are less than 8 
percent. It makes for a great talking point. I understand that.
  Madam Speaker, nobody wants to hit the debt ceiling. In fact, no one 
wants to get anywhere near it. On the contrary, we are the ones that 
are trying to get Washington's spending under control so it will live 
within its means. That's why we talk about budgets and spending and 
living within our means, because House Republicans fight that fight. If 
we weren't doing it, we wouldn't even know that there are limits to our 
spending. The House budget does just that, balancing the Federal budget 
in 10 years.
  We understand that we must take precautions to protect the 
creditworthiness of the United States. We can hope for the best, but we 
must prepare for the worst. And the worst that can happen with the debt 
ceiling is a government default. The bill before us today takes default 
off the table, period. No more, no less.
  We've been told by the credit-rating agencies that the greatest 
factor affecting our national credit rating is the government's ability 
to pay its debt-holders. This bill makes sure that it will. This bill 
requires--not allows--requires Treasury to continue to pay principal 
and interest on existing debt if, and only if, we hit the debt ceiling 
before a deal is reached. This is a backstop that takes default off the 
table.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. CAMP. I yield an additional 30 seconds to the gentleman.
  Mr. GRIFFIN of Arkansas. With it we can focus on the other issues of 
debt and spending that created the problem in the first place. We can 
have an honest debate about what is driving government debt and how to 
deal with it. I hope we don't get anywhere near the debt ceiling limit. 
I hope we use the next few months to negotiate and reach an agreement 
that avoids any risk of hitting the debt ceiling; but until then, we 
should agree that it's our duty to protect America's credit rating.
  I look forward to voting for this measure, and I urge my colleagues 
to join me in supporting it.
  Mr. LEVIN. I now yield 1\1/2\ minutes to the gentleman from 
Massachusetts (Mr. Neal), another very distinguished member of our 
committee.
  (Mr. NEAL asked and was given permission to revise and extend his 
remarks.)
  Mr. NEAL. Madam Speaker, I stand in opposition to the Republican 
proposal today to pay China first.
  Now, I think that there is another way that we might describe this 
legislation from our Republican friends, and it would go like this: 
let's balance the budget when Bill Clinton is President, and let's 
balance the budget when Barack Obama is President. But in the 
intervening 8 years, let's go on a reckless spending spree and cut 
taxes by $2.3 trillion, engage two wars internationally, embrace a 
prescription drug bill, spend the country into oblivion, and cut taxes 
for the wealthiest people.
  Recall: balance the budget when Bill Clinton is President, and 
balance the budget when Barack Obama is President. Worry about the debt 
not when George Bush is President, but only when you have Democratic 
Presidents.
  This is a reckless proposal today, and everybody knows it.
  Speaker Boehner is quoted in one of the dailies this morning as 
saying of course we pay the bondholders first. That's a fact. The 
previous speaker didn't mention that. He said, let's deal with the 
facts. So who are the bondholders? They emphasize, they suggest that 
it's the American people. Foreign debt is held by the Chinese and the 
Japanese second, and everybody knows it.
  So it's austerity for the American people, but make sure that the 
bondholders are paid. It's cut back on everything for the American 
people, but

[[Page H2544]]

make sure the bondholders are paid. Cut taxes by $2.3 trillion, and not 
to worry about the austerity of the American people.
  Recall: balance the budget when Bill Clinton is President; balance 
the budget when Barack Obama is President.
  Mr. CAMP. I yield 2 minutes to the distinguished gentleman from 
Louisiana (Mr. Scalise).
  Mr. SCALISE. Madam Speaker, I thank the gentleman from Michigan for 
yielding and for bringing this bill forward, Congressman McClintock's 
Full Faith and Credit Act. I'm proud to be a cosponsor of the bill 
because what the bill does is clearly take default off the table as an 
option when we're having negotiations over the debt ceiling.
  Now, people would say why is this even an issue. Unfortunately, it's 
an issue because the only people in town who have been threatening 
default are President Obama and liberals in Congress. And you've heard 
some of the speakers against this bill today talking about the threat 
of default. What's so good about this bill is it takes default off the 
table. It takes away their ability to default on our Nation's debt.
  In fact, President Obama in the last debt ceiling negotiation almost 
2 years ago was the one running around the country threatening to 
default on our credit, so much so that it scared the markets and hurt 
our economy. And, in fact, it is one of the things that led to a 
downgrade, the first time in our Nation's history that our credit 
rating was downgraded because the problem that gets us to the debt 
ceiling is that Washington has a spending problem. It's spending that 
continues to force us to hit the debt ceiling.
  And so when we're negotiating on the debt ceiling, we shouldn't be 
worried about the President running around threatening default; we 
should be focused on fixing the spending problem. Americans sent us 
here to tackle the tough issues, not to be clouded and confused by the 
President's threats of default. Unfortunately, the GAO has even said 
the President can prioritize. He should. It would be responsible to pay 
your debts, but the President himself has said he would consider 
defaulting if we hit the debt ceiling.
  And so what this bill says is you pay Americans first. As the 
chairman of Ways and Means pointed out, it is American citizens who own 
the bulk of our debt. They would be paid. Social Security would be 
paid. But then we could focus on the spending problem, and the 
negotiations on debt ceiling would be about solving the spending 
problem in Washington that continues to force us to hit the debt 
ceiling so that we can stop living from crisis to crisis and finally 
get our economy moving again. I urge passage.
  Mr. LEVIN. I now yield 1\1/2\ minutes to the gentleman from 
Connecticut (Mr. Larson), another distinguished member of our 
committee.
  Mr. LARSON of Connecticut. I thank the gentleman. I rise today to 
oppose the Pay China First Act, and I do this with a heavy heart 
because I know the number of talented individuals that we have on this 
committee and the process that we've been through where we're working 
together. It astounds me that somehow the ideological tail of the Tea 
Party wags the whole Republican effort in this area, and the 
ideological reach of the Tea Party exceeds the certainty that we should 
be bringing to the American people.

                              {time}  1010

  Instead, we're playing hostage politics again, holding up the 
American people, creating all the uncertainty that we don't need in 
this kind of climate instead of demonstrating that we can sit down and 
work together.
  I get the politics. I understand how you have to accede to a group 
that continues to take us to the precipice and then pull back. The 
American people are through with it.
  Let's sit down, deal with this, and then move on; create the 
certainty that will create the jobs here. Let's not find ourselves in a 
situation that becomes almost oxymoron, where we're paying China first, 
at the expense of Americans when there is no good reason why we should 
be dealing with this issue whatsoever, other than the hostage politics 
that it creates to deal with an ideological minority that drives the 
other side.
  Mr. CAMP. I yield 2 minutes to the distinguished gentleman from 
California (Mr. LaMalfa).
  Mr. LaMALFA I appreciate my colleague from Michigan allowing me to 
speak here today. My colleague from California, I'm glad to be a 
cosponsor of this very important measure.
  ``Full faith and credit,'' what does that mean? What does it mean to 
the American people? When we ask for them to send us to Washington, to 
send us to this august place, we're asking for their faith in what we 
do with their money, with their tax dollars.
  And so when we report back to them, what does that look like to them? 
Have we upheld their faith? Have we done everything we can in this 
Nation to keep the credit rating of America on line?
  This measure is a giant step towards keeping that faith, to paying 
our bills on time, to paying the types of things that keep our credit 
rating in a best possible fashion for our country.
  We default on that, we put our whole economic system in peril. We 
drive up the cost of doing business for our government, and more tax 
dollars it costs to run our government when we do that.
  We hear talk about pay China first. Well, that's kind of funny, 
because if we wouldn't do that kind of business with China, if we'd pay 
attention to our own level of spending and growing the economy of this 
country instead of having to do things that cause debt to go up higher, 
we wouldn't be having to contract with them for more debt.
  So that comes back to this place here, reforming the way we do 
business. We don't need to run up more debt. We don't need to put 
ourselves in a position where we can't get together on getting the 
budget done, on getting the debt ceiling adjusted whatever it takes so 
we don't fall into this default position.
  So I think this is a giant step in the right direction. I commend my 
colleagues for making this happen. And let's uphold the faith that 
we've asked of the people of this country by paying our bills on time, 
by paying the debt, the interest that it takes to keep our credit in 
line as best possible as we can in this country.
  So this is a measure that deserves support and puts the priorities 
first. I ask for support for it.
  Mr. LEVIN. I yield 1\1/2\ minutes to the gentleman from Oregon (Mr. 
Blumenauer), another distinguished member of our committee.
  Mr. BLUMENAUER. I rise in opposition to the Pay China First Act. 
Simply by putting this legislation on the floor, it does real damage in 
terms of putting questions in the minds of people around the world who 
to this point have been giving billions of dollars to the United States 
Government to be able to pay for past spending at record low rates.
  I listened to the last speaker opine that we need to do everything to 
justify the faith in the American people. Well, the reckless threats 
that we saw 2 years ago, where, for the first time, we really were 
staring into the face of the abyss and it was a real possibility that 
they would withhold the votes, deny increase in the debt ceiling and, 
for the first time in our history, not pay for spending already 
incurred, in fact, ironically, the Ryan budget would have required a 
massive increase in the debt ceiling. The American people know this, 
and no amount of subterfuge here is going to eliminate that doubt, that 
concern, that apprehension. It may give the illusion of a few more 
days' breathing room with the debt ceiling.
  What we need to do is set this aside and get to business. I would 
note, with no small amount of irony, that my friends on the other side 
of the aisle who have been so interested in a budget now refuse to 
appoint members for a conference committee so that the House and the 
Senate can come together and do that. That would be a lot more 
productive than this charade.
  Mr. CAMP. I reserve the balance of my time, Madam Speaker.
  Mr. LEVIN. I yield 1\1/2\ minutes to the gentleman from Wisconsin 
(Mr. Kind), another distinguished member of our committee.
  Mr. KIND. Madam Speaker, I thank the gentleman for yielding me this 
time, and I, too, rise in opposition to the Pay China First Act.
  Madam Speaker, I, for the life of me, do not understand why we are 
even seriously considering this legislation which would call for the 
default on our Nation's financial obligations for the

[[Page H2545]]

very first time in our Nation's history, completely jeopardize the full 
faith and credit of the United States of America, jeopardize the 
economic recovery, which still needs help right now, and it would be 
the greatest unforced, self-inflicted wound that this body can commit 
against the U.S. economy in our Nation's history.
  But let's be clear. This has very little to do about true fiscal 
responsibility. This issue, this legislation is being driven by a very 
narrow bunch on the other side with a radical governing philosophy 
which basically says, I hate my government so much that I'm willing to 
jeopardize the full faith and credit of the United States and bring 
this economy down until we get our way. That's what's driving this 
legislation right now. That's the jeopardy that we face with it.
  And I doubt that this has a serious chance of passing. But what the 
answer to this is is for us to go to conference on the budget 
resolutions that have now passed the House and Senate and start talking 
and listening to each other to find the common ground we need to reach 
a long-term deficit reduction agreement.
  But defaulting on some of our obligations will mean putting great 
doubt in the rest of the investors in the United States in regards to 
who will be next. And that's what this legislation is promising: a 
default with some, a payment of China and others at the expense of the 
U.S. economy.
  I encourage my colleagues to vote ``no'' on this ill-conceived 
legislation.
  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. LEVIN. I yield 1\1/2\ minutes to the gentleman from the great 
State of New Jersey (Mr. Pascrell), another distinguished member of our 
committee.
  Mr. PASCRELL. I rise, Madam Speaker, in strong opposition to the Pay 
China First Act. This is a Pyrrhic proposal if I ever saw one.
  By the way, the firefighters are in town today and tomorrow, and I'm 
going to go to every firefighter I see in Washington, D.C., and tell 
them how foolish--you know, the sponsors of this legislation believe 
that the Federal Government has no responsibility to firefighters or 
police officers anyway. It's strictly a local thing. So they're not 
trying to balance a budget.
  If this bill becomes law, the government will still be borrowing 
money and our deficit will increase. It's what this bill allows us to 
borrow money for that is so shameful.
  Is the government allowed to pay our Active Duty military? No.
  Can we add to our deficit to fund veterans' benefits? No.
  What about Medicare? Sorry, we're not going to pay those bills.
  However, the government is allowed to borrow to pay back foreign 
bondholders. The majority apparently believes it's okay to borrow money 
and add to our deficit to pay China, but not to honor the obligations 
we have to our troops, our veterans, our seniors, et cetera. Shameful. 
There is simply no other word.
  The United States of America pays its bills, period, end of sentence, 
case closed. We've done it for 200 years, whether it's obligations that 
we have to our troops or seniors, we have to those who have bought our 
bonds.
  We all saw what happened in the summer of 2011. We don't need a 
repeat.

                              {time}  1020

  Mr. LEVIN. I now yield 1\1/2\ minutes to another member of our 
committee, the distinguished gentleman from New York (Mr. Crowley).
  (Mr. CROWLEY asked and was given permission to revise and extend his 
remarks.)
  Mr. CROWLEY. Mr. Speaker, I rise in strong opposition to the Pay 
China First Act. This is a very dangerous debate that we are conducting 
today because I think it has ramifications beyond simple debate. It 
calls into question whether or not America will pay its bills. You 
could also call this bill the Put America Last Act because that's 
exactly what this bill does. It's a bill that will actually make the 
Tea Party policies a reality, turning us into a deadbeat nation, a 
nation that does not pay its bills.
  This Republican bill will codify into law a new low for America. It 
will ensure U.S. taxpayers always pay China and other regimes and 
foreign banks before our veterans, before our seniors on Medicare, and 
even before our enlisted troops bravely serving overseas. That's right. 
We'll pay these folks before we pay these folks. We pay these folks 
under this bill if it were to become law before we pay these folks. 
That simply is wrong and unacceptable to the American people.
  Even the sponsors of this bill admit that in addition to putting 
China first and America last, their bill will also increase the 
deficit. Let me say that again. This bill will also increase the 
deficit and will pay China first. What the Republican majority is doing 
with this bill is announcing to the world--everyone from small 
businesses who sell services to the government to grandmothers buying 
savings bonds for their grandchildren--that this Congress is not 
serious about paying our Nation's bill.
  My colleagues, please, put Americans first, put our troops first and 
China last. Do not pass the Pay China First Act.
  Mr. CAMP. I would like to include for the Record a letter from the 
Congressional Budget Office that says this bill has no budget impact.

                                                    U.S. Congress,


                                  Congressional Budget Office,

                                    Washington, DC, April 26, 2013
     Hon. Dave Camp
     Chairman, Committee on Ways and Means
     House of Representatives, Washington, DC.
       Dear Mr. Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
     prepared the enclosed cost estimate for H.R. 807, the Full 
     Faith and Credit Act.
       If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
     pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Jared 
     Brewster.
           Sincerely,
                                                Robert A. Sunshine
                             (For Douglas W. Elmendorf, Director).
       Enclosure.

               Congressional Budget Office Cost Estimate

     H.R. 807--Full Faith and Credit Act
       H.R. 807 would allow the Department of the Treasury to 
     issue debt to pay principal and interest on debt held by the 
     public and debt held by the Old-Age and Survivors Insurance 
     Trust Fund and Disability Insurance Trust Fund, if the 
     statutory limit on debt is reached. The bill would require 
     the Treasury to provide a weekly report to the House 
     Committee on Ways and Means and Senate Committee on Finance 
     outlining the exempted transactions until a new debt limit is 
     enacted.
       CBO estimates that enacting H.R. 807, by itself, would 
     result in no costs or savings to the federal government 
     because it would not change any of the government's tax or 
     spending policies. Therefore, pay-as-you-go procedures do not 
     apply. In addition, CBO estimates that the bill would not 
     significantly add to the Treasury's administrative costs.
       H.R. 807 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
     mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act.
       The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Jared Brewster. 
     This estimate was approved by Peter H. Fontaine, Assistant 
     Director for Budget Analysis.

  Mr. CAMP. I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. LEVIN. It is now my real pleasure to yield 2 minutes to the 
ranking member on the Budget Committee, the gentleman from Maryland 
(Mr. Van Hollen).
  Mr. VAN HOLLEN. Madam Speaker, I thank my friend and colleague from 
Michigan. I strongly oppose this bill which, as our colleagues have 
said, says we should pay the government of China before we pay our 
troops, before we pay our veterans, and before we pay other bills here 
in the United States.
  Of all the bad ideas that have come to the floor of this House, this 
one is one of the worst. It's a reckless, irresponsible proposal that 
says the United States of America is not going to pay all the bills 
that are due and owing. That will have a terrible impact on our 
creditworthiness, it will undermine the full faith and credit of the 
United States, and it would wreak havoc in the economy.
  Look, Madam Speaker, our constituents don't have the luxury of waking 
up one morning and saying: Do you know what? I'm only going to make my 
mortgage payment. I'm not going to make my car payment, and I'm not 
going to make my credit card payments.
  If they did that, what would happen? They would lose their 
creditworthiness. For the United States of America to say we're going 
to pay some bills but not all would have hugely damaging impacts on the 
economy.
  And it gets worse, because when they say, We've got to pay some, but 
not all, you've got to decide whom you're going to pay first. And what 
they decide here

[[Page H2546]]

is they're going to pay China first, and they have to decide who is not 
a priority. In this bill, our veterans are not a priority, and our 
troops risking their lives in Afghanistan are not a priority. China is 
a priority; they're not.
  Now, Madam Speaker, what will happen here is that people will lose 
faith in whether or not the country pays its bills. People need to 
understand very clearly that this is not about expanding the debt 
ceiling in order to take on new obligations. This is about paying our 
existing obligations. And if we announce to the world that we're 
planning on not paying our obligations, whether they're to bondholders 
or to our troops, guess what happens? People will lose faith in the 
United States Government, and the economy will get hit hard.
  Let's vote against this bill that says China comes before our troops 
and our veterans.
  Mr. CAMP. In August of 2010, Chairman Admiral Mullen said that the 
most significant threat to our national security was our debt. And 
since that time, we have added hundreds of billions of dollars to our 
national debt.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. LEVIN. I now yield 1\1/2\ minutes to a distinguished Member, the 
gentlewoman from Pennsylvania, Allyson Schwartz.
  Ms. SCHWARTZ. I rise in strong opposition to this Republican pay 
China first bill, which would jeopardize the full faith and credit of 
the United States. This legislation dictates which of our Nation's 
bills we will pay and which we will not, and poses a serious, dangerous 
threat to our economy. The Republicans put foreign creditors ahead of 
our veterans, Active Duty military, Medicare recipients, and small 
businesses.
  The Republicans' refusal to pay our Nation's bills inflicts another 
round of unnecessary wounds that weakened our economy in 2011. American 
families, American workers, and American small businesses have battled 
economic uncertainty for far too long, and this deeply irresponsible 
legislation will only exacerbate the challenges we face.
  Instead of moving us closer to common ground on a balanced, 
responsible path for economic growth, Republicans' brinksmanship 
threatens to undermine consumer and investor confidence and slows 
economic growth.
  I urge opposition to this legislation and instead that we do what we 
have always done as Americans: pay our bills, pay them on time, pay 
them in full and protect America's economy and our financial standing 
in the global economy.
  Mr. LEVIN. Can I ask our distinguished Speaker how much time remains 
on each side?
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Levin) has 
3\1/2\ minutes remaining. The gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Camp) has 
6\1/2\ minutes remaining.
  Mr. CAMP. I have no further speakers.
  Mr. LEVIN. I now yield 1\1/2\ minutes to the distinguished gentleman 
from Texas (Mr. Veasey).
  Mr. VEASEY. Madam Speaker, I rise in strong opposition to the Pay 
China First Act. Once again, the Republican majority has chosen to play 
politics with the credit of our Nation. Instead of coming to the table 
with solutions, they are ensuring that we will come to a default on our 
Nation's debt.
  This bill accomplishes one simple goal: pay China first. If the 
Republicans cause a default on our debt, H.R. 807 would guarantee that 
bondholders in China and other foreign nations will get paid before our 
men and women in uniform. Honorable veterans and the doctors and the 
hospitals that take care of our senior citizens on Medicare will all 
lose out. Are these truly the right priorities for our country, Madam 
Speaker?
  Democrats are focused on job recovery, job growth, and securing a 
future for our hardworking taxpayers and the middle class. We are ready 
to act now on commonsense budget proposals that are balanced and fair. 
I ask the majority now to stop playing political games and let's work 
together on commonsense solutions to strengthen our country.
  Mr. LEVIN. So, Mr. Camp, are you ready to close this part of our 
debate?
  How much time remains?
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Levin) has 
2\1/2\ minutes remaining.
  Mr. LEVIN. I just want to read the facts why this bill essentially 
says ``China first.'' I want everybody to understand this isn't 
rhetoric; this is reality.
  The Republicans, under this bill, prioritize $14.3 trillion in debt, 
of that, $2.7 trillion in Social Security and $11.6 trillion in public 
debt. Of that public debt, $5.6 trillion is foreign. So when you come 
up and talk about all of the American public, you are not talking about 
what is in this bill. And of that foreign debt, the largest creditor is 
China, with over $1 trillion.

                              {time}  1030

  So it's absolutely true that essentially what you're saying is pay 
the largest of the foreign creditors instead of American troops, 
veterans, physicians, school lunch programs, universities doing medical 
research, taxpayers getting refunds, and other Federal trust funds 
holding Treasury bonds, Medicare--these are Americans'--deposited 
insurance, highway trust funds, et cetera, et cetera. That's the fact.
  Now, there's some effort here to say, oh, we're not defaulting. Yes, 
you are. You're not defaulting on sovereign debt, but you're 
defaulting, except for Social Security, on everything else. Republicans 
are becoming lead defaulters in terms of paying our debt.
  As I said earlier, the credit agencies have said, and I'll close with 
this:

       It is not assured that the Treasury would or legally could 
     prioritize debt service over its myriad of other obligations 
     . . . but very likely prompt downgrade, even as our debt 
     obligations continued to be met.

  This is a drastic, serious mistake. Vote ``no.''
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.
  Madam Speaker, I think it's helpful in a debate like this to start 
with the facts. And I would just say it's illustrative of just how out 
of touch and irresponsible the other side is when they assert that our 
debt is $14 trillion. Our debt is over $16 trillion. They've just lost 
$2 trillion? No wonder they don't think this is an urgent problem. They 
don't even know what our debt is.
  This legislation is very similar to 1996, legislation that was passed 
in a bipartisan vote and was signed by then-Democrat President Bill 
Clinton.
  Many States guarantee their government debt, or what is often called 
their sovereign debt, and they have done that for decades. If we 
default on our government or sovereign debt, the consequences are so 
severe that no one gets paid--our military, our seniors, our veterans, 
our farmers. All Americans deserve a strong economy, and that means 
getting our debt under control.
  And let's just clear up another fact. The top two-thirds of our debt 
is held by Americans and their retirement funds, including the U.S. 
military retirement fund.
  Now, one reason we're in this position is that this administration 
has racked up more than $5 trillion in debt, more than the previous 
four Presidents added together. That's why we're in this situation. We 
have a debt problem. This legislation ensures that the debt of the 
United States will be paid.
  So I urge support for H.R. 807, and I yield back the balance of my 
time.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. All time for debate on the bill has expired.


                     Amendment Offered by Mr. Camp

  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, I have an amendment at the desk.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The Clerk will designate the amendment.
  The text of the amendment is as follows:

       Page 6, after line 17, insert the following (and 
     redesignate succeeding subsections accordingly):
       (c) Prohibition on Compensation for Members of Congress.--
     None of the obligations issued under subsection (a) may be 
     used to pay compensation for Members of Congress.
       Page 7, line 2, insert ``the authority is in use'' after 
     ``week''.
       Page 7, strike line 13 and all that follows through line 
     17.

  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to House Resolution 202, the 
gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Camp) and a Member opposed each will 
control 5 minutes.
  The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Michigan.
  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, H.R. 807, the Full Faith and Credit Act, 
permanently takes default off the table, as we've been debating, but 
this amendment makes a couple of simple

[[Page H2547]]

changes. It clarifies that any debt issued pursuant to this bill may 
not be used to pay salaries of Members of Congress--of the House and of 
the Senate.
  It also makes clear that each and every time the Secretary of the 
Treasury uses the authority provided in the bill, that the Secretary 
must report weekly on the amount of debt issued and the reason for the 
issuance to ensure transparency so that Congress is fully informed.
  So I urge support for my straightforward amendment and support for 
the underlying bill and reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. LEVIN. Madam Speaker, I rise in opposition to the amendment.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The gentleman from Michigan is recognized 
for 5 minutes.
  Mr. LEVIN. I yield myself such time as I may consume. I'm just going 
to speak for a short time and then yield.
  I respect the chairman of the committee; we've been friends for a 
long time. It's really sad this amendment is here. There can't be money 
used under the bill for salaries. There's no lack of clarity here. 
Essentially, this is an effort to give some kind of fig leaf, or 
whatever it is, for a terrible, terrible bill.
  I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. CAMP. I reserve the balance of my time.
  Mr. LEVIN. I yield 2 minutes to the gentleman from Maryland (Mr. 
Hoyer).
  Mr. HOYER. I thank the gentleman for yielding.
  I have already spoken about this amendment. I think this amendment is 
as sad as the bill.
  We continue to play games because we think that, in a way, we will 
compel people to vote for something they don't want to vote for--and, 
in my view, are not going to vote for. I think it's sad. I think we 
continue to demagogue this institution and its Members. That's sad. We 
leaders should not do that. This is a serious bill.
  Now, I want to tell the gentleman from Michigan, the chairman of the 
Ways and Means Committee, I know what the debt is. And I know that debt 
has been incurred because we bought a lot of things we didn't pay for, 
including over $1 trillion of Afghanistan and Iraq, including a 
prescription drug bill that projects over $2 trillion, including tax 
cuts that were $2.3 trillion that not a penny were paid for. I 
understand, and I think it's serious.
  The sad thing is that this is not a serious response. This is an 
irresponsible response. This is a response that, as I said earlier, 
says that we will pay some people first, but we won't pay all our 
debts. The richest country on the face of the Earth, the most 
creditworthy nation on the face of the Earth, we won't pay all our 
debts.
  There is a simple way to do this: stop demagoguing one another. And I 
want to say to the gentleman, as he knows, Democrats have demagogued 
this issue when we've had Republican Presidents and Republicans have 
demagogued it when we've had Democratic Presidents.
  We all know that we've incurred debts and we're going to pay them. 
That's all this is. It's very simple: we're either going to pay our 
debts or we're not.
  Now, I want to tell my friend, the gentleman from Michigan, I know 
about the debt. The gentleman refers to $5 trillion. I'm sure the 
gentleman knows these statistics:
  Under Ronald Reagan, the debt was increased 189 percent; under George 
Bush, 55 percent--the first George Bush, 55 percent; under this 
President so far, a little over 40 percent.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The time of the gentleman has expired.
  Mr. LEVIN. I yield the gentleman 1 minute.
  Mr. HOYER. Every Republican President with whom I've served, Madam 
Speaker, every Republican President has increased the debt as a 
percentage of GDP higher than either Bill Clinton or Barack Obama. Bill 
Clinton was the lowest, 37 percent. This President is a little over 40 
percent of GDP. It's just like saying the minimum wage now is $7.25, 
which is so much higher than it was in 1970--which is not the case. 
Now, as a dollar, a nominal figure, it's higher, and the gentleman 
knows that very well. He is my friend and I have great respect for him. 
But this bill is unfortunate. This amendment is--I won't characterize 
it as harshly as I feel about it.
  We have to stop playing games. We have to be serious. We need to come 
together and adopt a big plan that's balanced, that can pass and will 
put this country on a fiscally sustainable path; and, in the process, 
we ought to pay our bills because we incurred them. We incurred them 
honestly for objectives that this House, this Senate, and the President 
of the United States signed for.

                              {time}  1040

  Mr. CAMP. I reserve the balance of my time.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Levin) has 
1\1/2\ minutes remaining.
  Mr. LEVIN. I yield that minute and a half to the vice chair of our 
caucus, the gentleman from New York (Mr. Crowley), a member of our 
committee.
  Mr. CROWLEY. I have reservations about the constitutionality of this 
amendment. What I will say is I would gladly give my pay if it meant 
that these guys don't get paid. I will give my salaries to the 
defenders of this country, the men and women who are the front line, if 
their pay was in question. If all the money in the Congress in our pay 
could do that, I would gladly do that.
  But I say we should definitely pay these guys before we pay these 
guys. That's what your bill does. The overriding bill would have these 
guys get paid before these guys. Forget about us guys.
  This amendment is a farce. It's to divert attention from the fact 
that you want to pay these guys before you pay these guys. At the end 
of the day, that's what the overriding bill is about--putting China 
first, paying China first, putting our troops last, putting the 
American people last. It's about putting them first and us last.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Levin) has 
15 seconds remaining.
  Mr. LEVIN. I will use it by saying, a default is a default is a 
default. This bill is a serious mistake, as is the amendment. People 
can do what they want on the amendment. Vote ``no'' on the basic bill.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, I yield myself the balance of my time.
  I just wanted to say I also have great respect for the gentleman from 
Maryland who spoke a couple of speakers ago, who is the distinguished 
minority whip. We have worked closely together on other issues as well.
  I would just say that this legislation is very similar to legislation 
that was passed in a bipartisan way in 1996 and signed by then-
President Bill Clinton. So, this is not something that is brand-new in 
terms of an approach for this Congress to take when dealing and 
struggling with debt and our debt issues.
  I think it is also important to remember as we go through this debate 
that now our debt is larger than our entire economy and that the debt 
that has been incurred under this administration is larger than the 
debt of the previous four Presidents. We have a path that is 
unsustainable that has gotten worse, and this has gone on for far too 
long.
  I think it is important, though, that we make these clarifying points 
in this amount. Clearly, we've heard a lot about demagoguery about who 
gets paid first. The vast majority of our debt is held by Americans. 
Americans and the U.S. military retirees will be paid first under this 
bill; and their retirement funds, their pensions, their savings, that's 
very important.
  This is about making sure that the debt of the United States--that 
the United States has incurred, not the ongoing payments, but the debt 
of the United States--is paid. That takes default off the table. That 
allows us then to move forward to get the larger bipartisan solutions 
on this growing and difficult problem with our debt that we need to 
address.
  The amendment makes it clear that Members of Congress' salaries won't 
be paid, that any debt issued will not pay that. It also makes clear 
that the Secretary of the Treasury must report weekly on the amount of 
debt. We need transparency. We often don't get the latest information. 
We need that, both House and Senate. So, this is a straightforward 
amendment. It's clarifying.
  I urge support for the amendment, I urge support for the underlying 
bill,

[[Page H2548]]

and I yield back the balance of my time.
  Ms. JACKSON LEE. Madam Speaker, I rise in strong opposition to speak 
on H.R. 807, which would result in the Congress refusing to pay 
obligations it has already agreed to. American families do not get to 
choose which bills to pay and which ones not to pay, and the United 
States Congress cannot either without putting the Nation into default 
for the first time in its history.
  I oppose this bill because not only will it be bad for America, but 
devastating for Houston. Just as our nation's economy has begun to show 
signs of sustained improvement, along comes H.R. 807 to further depress 
the economy of the parts of Houston which have not been fortunate 
enough to benefit from the economic recovery. The city of Houston has a 
half-trillion dollar economy which is threatened if the United States 
economy begins to falter because of the sequester already in place, and 
misguided legislation like this bill.
  This bill would threaten the full faith and credit of the United 
States, cost American jobs, hurt businesses of all sizes, and do 
irreparable damage to the economy. It is important to note that the Dow 
Jones Industrial Average closed above 15,000 for the first time ever, 
and jobless claims fell to a five-year low this week.
  Why would we want to jeopardize this progress with a bill like H.R. 
807, which is a step in the wrong direction.
  This legislation would cause the Nation to default on payments for 
Medicare, veterans, national security, and many other critical 
priorities. This legislation is unwise, unworkable, and unacceptably 
risky. Earlier this year, the Congress took a sensible approach to 
paying the bills it had already incurred by raising the debt limit. By 
contrast, the proposal in H.R. 807, which chooses which bills to pay, 
is a deeply irresponsible approach that is simply default by another 
name.
  Americans want a clean debt limit increase, which has been done 
numerous times but the normal process by which the Treasury Secretary 
consults with the President and Congress, seems to have hit a major 
roadblock. This obstructionist governing is based on a practice that 
seems to put ideology over pragmatism and politics over common-sense 
legislating.
  Madam Speaker, another reason I cannot support H.R. 807 is because it 
gives preference to making payments to foreign bond holders such as 
China, Iran, and the Cayman Islands over the payments needed for 
critical services for our veterans, and those payments required under 
Chapter 31, United States Code, which insures the savings of Americans.
  I would hope that my colleagues on the other side realize that these 
are trying times for the American people and brinksmanship is not the 
answer. This body must come up with a sensible solution to the pressing 
financial problems which plague our economy. We cannot continue to hold 
our Nation hostage, keeping the benefits of recipients of Social 
Security, Medicaid, and Medicare who must have sleepless nights because 
they are worried about the disappearance of their monthly checks.
  I support a long-term increase in the debt limit that would increase 
certainty and economic stability. The bill before us this morning, H.R. 
807, is a short-term measure with unnecessary complications, needlessly 
perpetuating uncertainty in the Nation's fiscal system, and I would 
note that the Obama Administration is also in opposition to this woeful 
piece of legislation that allows China to be paid first.
  My colleagues want to buy time so that they can figure out how to 
squeeze the American taxpayer even more by devising bone-crunching cuts 
and slashes to entitlement programs--all of which is driven by rabid 
ideology--as opposed to sitting down and working with Democrats to come 
up with reasonable budget reforms which do not hurt Seniors and the 
disadvantaged.
  Madam Speaker, Social Security is currently the only source of income 
for nearly two-thirds of older American households receiving benefits, 
and roughly one-third of those households depend on Social Security for 
nearly all of their income. Half of those 65 and older have annual 
incomes below $18,500, and many older Americans have experienced recent 
and significant losses in retirement savings, pensions, and home 
values. Today, every dollar of the average Social Security retirement 
benefit of about $14,800 is absolutely critical to the typical 
beneficiary.
  Contrary to some claims, Social Security is not the cause of our 
nation's deficit problem. Not only does the program operate 
independently, but it is prohibited from borrowing. Social Security 
must pay all benefits from its own trust fund. If there are 
insufficient funds to pay out full benefits, benefits are automatically 
reduced to the level supported by the program's own revenues.
  I would add that instead of short-term management of self-inflicted 
fiscal crises, I truly believe we have an opportunity to strengthen the 
economy by putting the Nation on a sounder fiscal path. Progress has 
already been made towards that goal. In 2011, the President signed into 
law $1.4 trillion in spending reductions, not counting additional 
savings from winding down the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. We need to 
seize this template and move forward--not backwards, in the direction 
of H.R. 807.
  The fiscal agreement the President signed at the beginning of January 
increased revenue from high-income households by over $600 billion. 
Together with interest savings, these two steps will cut the deficit by 
more than $2.5 trillion over the next decade. We should have done more 
to address our revenue problem.
  The President has made clear that he remains willing to work with 
both parties in the Congress to budget responsibly and to achieve 
additional deficit reduction consistent with the principles of balance, 
shared growth, and shared opportunity. By adding Chained CPI to the 
discussion it is clear that President Obama is willing to go more than 
halfway to meet the House Majority; but they have not reciprocated.
  The President has also made clear that he will not have another 
debate with the Congress over whether or not they should pay the bills 
that they have already racked up through the laws that they passed. The 
President has made clear that the Congress has only two options--pay 
their bills, or fail to do so and put the Nation into default. And I am 
in complete agreement.
  According to the Bipartisan Policy Center, spending for Medicare and 
Medicaid is projected to increase from 21 percent of non-interest 
federal spending in 2010 to 31 percent by 2020. The numbers are wonkish 
sounding but in terms of real dollars, the increase is mammoth. That is 
why we must address the spending issue in earnest but not using the 
paltry monthly income of Seniors to pay for yachts for millionaires.
  National spending on health care has grown about 2 percentage points 
per year faster than GDP over time. Federal revenues, however, have not 
kept pace, growing at roughly the same rate as GDP.
  As a result, federal deficits will be driven upward by federal health 
programs unless their rate of growth is tamed. This discrepancy must be 
dealt with sooner rather than later, but no matter how you couch it, 
there is no better translation than the word: b-r-o-k-e.
  I hasten to add that Community Health Centers provide much needed, 
high-quality healthcare to over 20 million Americans. These centers are 
able to serve vulnerable portions of the American population, including 
racial and ethnic minorities, as well as rural and low-income 
Americans.
  I want to give some pertinent facts about my district and why the 
uncertainty provided by H.R. 807 is a step in the wrong direction.
  The Houston-Sugar Land-Baytown Metropolitan Area consists of 10 
counties: Austin, Brazoria, Chambers, Fort Bend, Galveston, Harris, 
Liberty, Montgomery, San Jacinto and Waller.
  The Houston metro area:
  It ranks sixth among U.S. metropolitan statistical areas with a 
population of 5,867,489 as of mid-2009, and it covers more than 10,000 
square miles, and has a gross product of $403.8 billion, according to 
The Perryman Group. This area recorded 2.54 million payroll jobs in 
November 2010, more than the job counts of 31 U.S. states, including 
Arizona, Colorado and Alabama.
  The Houston economy has experienced a resurgence but let's remember 
the economic history:
  The recession hit Houston in September '08. Our region lost 152,800 
jobs through January '10. We began to recoup jobs starting in February 
that year and by October '11, the region had gained 153,000 jobs, or 
101.1 percent of what we lost in the recession.
  And though Houston faces some challenges in the near term, the long-
term outlook is bright. The challenges are those of managing growth 
rather than economic stagnation. The long-term outlook for the Houston 
metro area is positive, and steady growth will be the norm for Houston 
for the foreseeable future. What Houston cannot afford right now is 
continued uncertainty from Washington, DC.
  Moreover, given the uncertainty of final funding decisions and the 
possibility that across-the-board spending cuts will drag us back into 
a recession unless Congress and the President can reach agreement to 
prevent the currently scheduled ``sequester,'' it is critical that we 
work towards bipartisan solutions to our nation's financial woes. Given 
the U.S. economy is showing signs of progress, it is crucial that we 
continue to fund government programs without interruption.
  Lastly, as a Senior Member of the Homeland Security and Judiciary 
Committees I understand the importance of the U.S. Customs and Border 
Protection mission to enforce drug, trade and travel laws in efforts to 
keep our borders safe; and the importance of ensuring

[[Page H2549]]

that our nation remains safe from terrorists and others who would do 
harm to our nation.
  In summation, I urge my colleagues to reject this poll-driven 
exercise in futility and give a clean debt ceiling vote so that the 
American people can carry-on with the business of achieving prosperity.
  Doing a clean debt limit bill is not a new law, new outlay, or some 
random, esoteric exercise in the fulfillment of the Obama Doctrine. In 
fact, according to the Congressional Research Service, since March 
1962, Congress has enacted 76 separate measures that have altered the 
limit on federal debt. Typically, the Treasury Secretary consults with 
the President and Congress, and the limit has been subsequently raised 
to accommodate our fiscal needs.
  And I close with the sacred words from our Constitution. Section 4 of 
the 14th Amendment states clearly that: ``the validity of the public 
debt of the United States . . . shall not be questioned.'' And a great 
nation pays its debts. That is why I oppose H.R. 807.
  I urge my colleagues to resoundingly reject H.R. 807.
  Ms. CLARKE. Madam Speaker, today we find ourselves debating a bill 
that could result in the United States of America defaulting on our 
debts. It seems that the Republican majority of the 113th Congress has 
decided to continue the practice of governing from one manufactured 
crisis to another.
  H.R. 807, the Pay China First Act, is a part of this majority's 
campaign of playing politics with our national economy at a time when 
the number one priority of this Congress should be putting Americans 
back to work.
  Madam Speaker, we raise our nation's debt ceiling to pay the bills 
that our nation has already accrued. The Republican majority's 
insistence on using the debt ceiling in their crusade against a short-
term deficit crisis that doesn't exist, has already harmed our nation's 
recovery.
  This bill, which the Republican majority knows full well has no 
chance in the Senate, is nothing more than political posturing at its 
worst. It is nothing more, Madam Speaker, than an attempt by the 
Republican majority to wash their hands of the calamitous effects their 
economic policies are having on the American people who want nothing 
more than their Congress to stop playing politics and get about the 
work they were elected to do.
  Instead, the Republican majority has continued their crusade of 
irresponsible spending and tax cuts which disproportionally affect 
those who need it the most.
  The number one priority of the 113th Congress should be putting 
Americans back to work and supporting policies that promote growth.
  Madam Speaker, the people of Brooklyn's 9th Congressional district, 
whom I have the honor of representing in this body, are tired of the 
113th Congress undermining the recovery our nation needs. This bill is 
not worthy of the American people.
  Madam Speaker, I submit an article in today's New York Times that, 
using analysis from leading public and private-sector economists, lays 
out the harm that the majority's focus on irresponsible spending cuts 
is having on our struggling economy.

                 [From the New York Times, May 8, 2013]

          Economists See Deficit Emphasis as Impeding Recovery

                (By Jackie Calmes and Jonathan Weisman)

       Washington--The nation's unemployment rate would probably 
     be nearly a point lower, roughly 6.5 percent, and economic 
     growth almost two points higher this year if Washington had 
     not cut spending and raised taxes as it has since 2011, 
     according to private-sector and government economists.
       After two years in which President Obama and Republicans in 
     Congress have fought to a draw over their clashing approaches 
     to job creation and budget deficits, the consensus about the 
     result is clear: Immediate deficit reduction is a drag on 
     full economic recovery.
       Hardly a day goes by when either government analysts or the 
     macroeconomists and financial forecasters who advise 
     investors and businesses do not report on the latest signs of 
     economic growth--in housing, consumer spending, business 
     investment. And then they add that things would be better but 
     for the fiscal policy out of Washington. Tax increases and 
     especially spending cuts, these critics say, take money from 
     an economy that still needs some stimulus now, and is getting 
     it only through the expansionary monetary policy of the 
     Federal Reserve.
       ``Fiscal tightening is hurting,'' Ian Shepherdson, chief 
     economist of Pantheon Macroeconomic Advisors, wrote to 
     clients recently. The investment bank Jefferies wrote of 
     ``ongoing fiscal mismanagement'' in its midyear report on 
     Tuesday, and noted that while the recovery and expansion 
     would be four years old next month, reduced government 
     spending ``has detracted from growth in five of past seven 
     quarters.''
       That period roughly coincides with the time that Mr. Obama 
     and Congressional Republicans have shared governance since 
     Republicans took control of the House in 2011, promising an 
     immediate $100 billion in spending cuts. Republicans did not 
     get that much then, but the series of budget compromises with 
     the president since--while not so great as they wanted--will 
     soon reduce annual discretionary spending for domestic and 
     military programs to the lowest level in half a century.
       As for revenues, Mr. Obama forced Republicans to acquiesce 
     in January to higher taxes from wealthy Americans. But worse, 
     in the macroeconomists' view, both parties agreed not to 
     extend a two-year-old cut in Americans' payroll taxes for 
     Social Security, reducing their spending money.
       In all this time, the president has fought unsuccessfully 
     to combine deficit reduction, including spending cuts and tax 
     increases, with spending increases and targeted tax cuts for 
     job-creation initiatives in areas like infrastructure, 
     manufacturing, research and education. That is a formula 
     closer to what the economists propose. But Republicans have 
     insisted on spending cuts alone and smaller government as the 
     key to economic growth.
       The results, Mr. Obama has taken to saying, despite his 
     complicity, are ``self-inflicted wounds.''
       ``The only way the problem does get fixed is if both 
     parties sit down and they say, `How are we going to make sure 
     that we're reducing our deficit sensibly?' '' he said last 
     week at a news conference. ``How are we making sure that 
     we're investing in things like rebuilding our airports and 
     our roads and our bridges, and investing in early childhood 
     education, basic research--all the things that are going to 
     help us grow?''
       Mr. Obama added, ``I cannot force Republicans to embrace 
     those common-sense solutions.''
       Speaker John A. Boehner stood by the Republicans' policies 
     during a session Tuesday with reporters. ``After four years 
     of mediocre job creation, it's obvious that we don't need 
     more tax hikes and more government spending,'' he said. ``We 
     need smarter policies to make America more competitive and 
     expand opportunities for everyone in our country.''
       ``We're the ones pushing this town to do the right thing 
     when it comes to the economy and jobs,'' Mr. Boehner added.
       The Federal Open Market Committee, which sets policy for 
     the central bank, noted signs of improvement in the private 
     sector last week in a statement. ``But fiscal policy is 
     restraining economic growth,'' it added, echoing public 
     comments that Ben S. Bernanke, the Fed chairman, has made for 
     months. In April, the International Monetary Fund said the 
     United States would achieve further growth ``in the face of a 
     very strong, indeed overly strong, fiscal consolidation.''
       Thursday will capture as plainly as any day lately the 
     differing approaches of Mr. Obama and Republicans toward the 
     economy and government's role.
       Mr. Obama plans to travel to Austin, Tex., to visit 
     technology students, workers and entrepreneurs and promote 
     his ideas to support efforts like theirs--the kind of 
     initiatives that Republicans have blocked.
       House Republicans expect to pass a measure that would allow 
     the Treasury to ``prioritize'' debt payments if Congress and 
     Mr. Obama cannot agree this year to increase the nation's 
     debt ceiling so the Treasury can keep borrowing money to pay 
     all creditors. Under the bill, as tax receipts came in, the 
     first priority would be paying creditors--like China, 
     Democratic opponents argue--and second would be Social 
     Security checks. But the measure would likely die in the 
     Democratic-controlled Senate.
       The ``prioritization'' proposal first arose in 2011 from 
     among the most conservative House Republicans, those who were 
     driving hardest against the White House on raising the debt 
     ceiling and expressing unconcern about default, but it has 
     now become mainstream in the House ranks.
       Economists and financial analysts generally dismiss the 
     idea as unworkable if not dangerous, and count on Democrats 
     to block it. Gregory Daco, a senior principal economist at 
     IHS Global Insight, said the Republicans' proposal was the 
     kind that caused his clients to ignore the fiscal policy out 
     of Washington, and rely instead on the Fed to buttress the 
     recovery.
       ``Whenever I talk to our customers or clients, they sort of 
     brush off everything that's related to fiscal policy,'' Mr. 
     Daco said. ``The view is, 'Oh, it doesn't matter.' That's 
     what I hear a lot.''
       ``What we try to convey is that it does matter,'' he said. 
     ``It is important in terms of growth. It's also important in 
     terms of confidence.''
       He noted that the economy was much stronger than Europe's 
     largely because the United States initially opted for 
     stimulus measures and allowed deficits to increase when the 
     recession and financial crisis hit five years ago. European 
     governments pursued austerity policies to cut their debts, 
     further stalling economic activity and in turn inflating 
     deficits.
       The more recent austerity policies here are helping to 
     bring annual deficits down, as a new report of the 
     Congressional Budget Office shows, after four years of 
     trillion-dollar shortfalls. Yet many analysts would prefer 
     that the measures had been timed for when the economy is 
     strong and unemployment below 7 percent.
       ``While I agree that the U.S. must get its fiscal house in 
     order,'' Jerry Webman, chief

[[Page H2550]]

     economist at OppenheimerFunds, wrote, ``I join the likes of 
     the I.M.F. in cautioning that too much austerity, too soon, 
     is likely counterproductive.''

  Mr. CONYERS. Madam Speaker, I rise today in opposition to H.R. 807, 
the Full Faith and Credit Act, which is simply a plan to default on the 
full faith and credit of the United States.
  Under this measure, the Treasury could not borrow above the federal 
debt limit for any other purpose than to pay selected holders of our 
debt, many of whom are outside the United States.
  While supposedly prioritizing this debt, all other already-incurred 
debt would still be paid by general revenues on a cash-flow basis. 
Forcing Treasury to default on many of our fundamental obligations, 
such as paying our active-duty troops, paying doctors and hospitals 
that care for our seniors on Medicare, paying veterans' benefits, and 
before American small businesses are paid.
  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.
  The pursuit of this bill is not in the best interest of Americans. It 
rebuts economists who say that debt prioritization is an awful, if not 
impossible policy, especially in light of the fact that the Treasury 
makes 80 to 100 million payments per month. The Bipartisan Policy 
Center and the Council of Inspectors General on Financial Oversight, as 
well as the Treasury itself, all agree on the conclusion that it would 
be simply impossible for them to pick and choose which bills are paid 
and which are not.
  By virtually ensuring a state of daily defaults on legal obligations 
of the federal goverment, this misguided proposal is more likely to 
create chaos in credit markets than ease investors' fears.
  We should not forget the lessons of 2011, when we last neared default 
over disagreements to raise the debt ceiling. Political brinksmanship 
with the debt ceiling caused uncertainty on Wall Street, the U.S. 
government's credit rating was downgraded for the first time in 
history, and we saw increases in borrowing costs to the tune of $1.3 
billion according to a report from the Government Accountability 
Office, which will add up to $19 billion in unnecessary additional debt 
over the next decade.
  The consequences of a default would be much worse and reverberate 
across our economy, affecting every American through higher interest 
rates, investors fleeing the U.S. market and broad economic 
uncertainty.
  This legislation has a very clear purpose--forcing the United States 
government to default on its obligations during forthcoming debt 
ceiling negotiations.
  America is not a delinquent nation, and we cannot risk becoming one. 
I urge my colleagues to oppose this dangerous bill, H.R. 807, the Full 
Faith and Credit Act.
  Mr. MARCHANT. Madam Speaker, I rise today in support of the Full 
Faith and Credit Act. As a conservative, ensuring that our nation pays 
its bills on time is a top priority.
  The Full Faith and Credit Act would protect America's credit rating 
by ensuring that we do not default on our nation's debt. It requires 
the Treasury to continue to make timely payments on our principal and 
interest in the event that our nation's debt limit is reached.
  Furthermore, what this does is take the politicization of the debt 
limit debate off of the table. Without a chance for default, we can 
negotiate in good faith with the President and Congressional Democrats 
on a plan that addresses our real problem--out of control spending.
  I look forward to having this debate, and I urge my colleagues to 
support this legislation.
  Mr. DINGELL. Madam Speaker, I rise in strong opposition to H.R. 807, 
the Full Faith and Credit Act. Instead of working productively with 
Democrats, my Republican colleagues seem content to continue dabbling 
in debt limit chicanery that threatens the economic security of this 
country.
  Let me be clear: H.R. 807 offers no comprehensive solution to the 
debt limit. It is a legislative blueprint for how the United States 
should pay its bills after it defaults. More baffling is the fact that 
the bill prioritizes debt payments to Chinese bondholders over paying 
our troops, supporting our veterans, and making Medicare payments to 
seniors.
  That Republicans continue to push bills like this indicates they have 
no real interest in fixing the sequester or putting in place the kinds 
of policies that will contribute to stable economic growth. This will 
have a seriously debilitating effect on financial markets at a time 
when we can ill afford it. In addition, H.R. 807 could lead to another 
downgrade of our country's credit rating because the bill indicates to 
markets that it assumes a default will actually occur.
  Madam Speaker, this is irresponsible policymaking at its finest. H.R. 
807 threatens to undo the full faith and credit of the United States, a 
promise that has stood for over 200 years and is the foundation of 
global capital markets. I urge my colleagues to put aside partisan 
differences and act in the country's best interests by voting this bill 
down.
  Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Madam Speaker, the purpose of the Full Faith 
and Credit Act (H.R. 807) is to protect the full faith and credit of 
the United States by requiring the Treasury Secretary to issue such 
debt as may be necessary to prevent a sovereign default. During the 
consideration of this bill in the Ways and Means Committee, I offered 
an amendment to clarify the relationship between debt issued under the 
authority in this bill and the statutory debt limit. This amendment was 
adopted by voice vote and is part of the bill as ordered reported by 
the Ways and Means Committee.
  This bill provides additional and limited authority to the Secretary 
of the Treasury to issue new debt obligations on behalf of the United 
States solely for the purpose of paying the principal and interest on 
specified debt obligations of the United States once the statutory debt 
limit has been reached. The intent of this bill is that debt 
obligations issued under the authority provided by the bill will count 
against the debt limit with one exception. This exception provides that 
if counting the full amount of these newly issued obligations against 
the debt limit would cause the debt limit to be exceeded, then the 
amount of the newly issued obligation that is in excess of the debt 
limit shall not count toward the limit.
  The following is a hypothetical example to explain the intended 
operation of this bill. Assume the debt limit has been reached and the 
payment of principal and interest on an existing debt obligation 
amounting to $100 requires the Treasury Secretary to issue $101 of new 
debt obligations using the authority provided in this Act. In this 
example, $100 of that new obligation would count against the debt limit 
while $1 would not. Importantly, applying this provision is a continual 
responsibility. If at some future date the stock of debt subject to the 
limit were reduced by $1, then the $1 that originally did not count 
against the debt limit would now count toward the debt limit. Under no 
circumstance can there be both room to issue new debt obligations 
without exceeding the statutory debt ceiling and an outstanding stock 
of debt obligations issued under the authority in this bill that is not 
subject to the debt limit.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to the rule, the previous question 
is ordered on the bill, as amended, and on the amendment offered by the 
gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Camp).
  The question is on the amendment by the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. 
Camp).
  The question was taken; and the Speaker pro tempore announced that 
the ayes appeared to have it.
  Mr. LEVIN. Madam Speaker, on that I demand the yeas and nays.
  The yeas and nays were ordered.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to clause 8 and clause 9 of rule 
XX, this 15-minute vote on adoption of the amendment will be followed 
by 5-minute votes on a motion to recommit, if ordered; passage of H.R. 
807, if ordered; and approval of the Journal.
  The vote was taken by electronic device, and there were--yeas 340, 
nays 84, not voting 8, as follows:

                             [Roll No. 140]

                               YEAS--340

     Aderholt
     Alexander
     Amash
     Amodei
     Andrews
     Bachmann
     Bachus
     Barber
     Barletta
     Barr
     Barrow (GA)
     Barton
     Benishek
     Bentivolio
     Bera (CA)
     Bilirakis
     Bishop (GA)
     Bishop (NY)
     Bishop (UT)
     Black
     Blackburn
     Bonamici
     Bonner
     Boustany
     Brady (TX)
     Braley (IA)
     Bridenstine
     Brooks (AL)
     Brooks (IN)
     Broun (GA)
     Brownley (CA)
     Buchanan
     Bucshon
     Burgess
     Bustos
     Calvert
     Camp
     Campbell
     Cantor
     Capito
     Capps
     Carney
     Carter
     Cartwright
     Cassidy
     Castro (TX)
     Chabot
     Chaffetz
     Chu
     Cicilline
     Coble
     Coffman
     Cole
     Collins (GA)
     Collins (NY)
     Conaway
     Connolly
     Cook
     Cooper
     Costa
     Cotton
     Courtney
     Cramer
     Crawford
     Crenshaw
     Crowley
     Cuellar
     Culberson
     Daines
     Davis, Rodney
     DeFazio
     DeLauro
     DelBene
     Denham
     Dent
     DeSantis
     DesJarlais
     Diaz-Balart
     Duckworth
     Duffy
     Duncan (SC)
     Duncan (TN)
     Ellmers
     Enyart
     Eshoo
     Esty
     Farenthold
     Farr
     Fincher
     Fitzpatrick
     Fleischmann
     Fleming
     Forbes
     Fortenberry
     Foster
     Foxx
     Frankel (FL)
     Franks (AZ)
     Frelinghuysen
     Gabbard
     Gallego
     Garamendi
     Garcia
     Gardner
     Garrett
     Gerlach
     Gibbs
     Gibson
     Gingrey (GA)
     Gohmert
     Goodlatte
     Gosar
     Gowdy
     Granger
     Graves (GA)
     Graves (MO)
     Green, Al
     Green, Gene
     Griffin (AR)
     Griffith (VA)
     Grimm
     Guthrie
     Hahn
     Hall
     Hanabusa
     Hanna
     Harper
     Harris
     Hartzler
     Hastings (WA)
     Heck (NV)
     Heck (WA)
     Hensarling
     Herrera Beutler
     Higgins
     Himes
     Hinojosa
     Holding

[[Page H2551]]


     Honda
     Horsford
     Hudson
     Huelskamp
     Huizenga (MI)
     Hultgren
     Hunter
     Hurt
     Israel
     Issa
     Jackson Lee
     Jenkins
     Johnson (OH)
     Johnson, Sam
     Jones
     Jordan
     Joyce
     Keating
     Kelly (IL)
     Kelly (PA)
     Kilmer
     Kind
     King (IA)
     King (NY)
     Kingston
     Kinzinger (IL)
     Kirkpatrick
     Kline
     Kuster
     Labrador
     LaMalfa
     Lamborn
     Lance
     Langevin
     Lankford
     Larson (CT)
     Latham
     Latta
     Lipinski
     LoBiondo
     Loebsack
     Lofgren
     Long
     Lowenthal
     Lowey
     Lucas
     Luetkemeyer
     Lujan Grisham (NM)
     Lujan, Ben Ray (NM)
     Lummis
     Lynch
     Maffei
     Maloney, Sean
     Marchant
     Marino
     Markey
     Massie
     Matheson
     McCarthy (CA)
     McCaul
     McClintock
     McCollum
     McHenry
     McIntyre
     McKeon
     McKinley
     McMorris Rodgers
     McNerney
     Meadows
     Meehan
     Meng
     Messer
     Mica
     Michaud
     Miller (FL)
     Miller (MI)
     Miller, Gary
     Mullin
     Mulvaney
     Murphy (FL)
     Murphy (PA)
     Napolitano
     Negrete McLeod
     Neugebauer
     Noem
     Nolan
     Nugent
     Nunes
     Nunnelee
     O'Rourke
     Olson
     Owens
     Palazzo
     Pastor (AZ)
     Paulsen
     Perry
     Peters (CA)
     Peters (MI)
     Peterson
     Petri
     Pittenger
     Pitts
     Poe (TX)
     Polis
     Pompeo
     Posey
     Price (GA)
     Price (NC)
     Quigley
     Radel
     Rahall
     Rangel
     Reed
     Reichert
     Renacci
     Ribble
     Rice (SC)
     Rigell
     Roby
     Roe (TN)
     Rogers (AL)
     Rogers (KY)
     Rogers (MI)
     Rohrabacher
     Rokita
     Rooney
     Ros-Lehtinen
     Roskam
     Ross
     Rothfus
     Royce
     Ruiz
     Runyan
     Ruppersberger
     Ryan (WI)
     Salmon
     Sanchez, Loretta
     Scalise
     Schiff
     Schneider
     Schock
     Schrader
     Schwartz
     Schweikert
     Scott, Austin
     Sensenbrenner
     Sessions
     Sewell (AL)
     Sherman
     Shimkus
     Shuster
     Simpson
     Sinema
     Slaughter
     Smith (NE)
     Smith (NJ)
     Smith (TX)
     Southerland
     Stewart
     Stivers
     Stockman
     Stutzman
     Swalwell (CA)
     Takano
     Terry
     Thompson (CA)
     Thompson (PA)
     Thornberry
     Tiberi
     Tierney
     Tipton
     Titus
     Tonko
     Turner
     Upton
     Valadao
     Van Hollen
     Vargas
     Veasey
     Vela
     Wagner
     Walberg
     Walden
     Walorski
     Walz
     Waxman
     Weber (TX)
     Webster (FL)
     Wenstrup
     Westmoreland
     Whitfield
     Williams
     Wilson (SC)
     Wittman
     Wolf
     Womack
     Woodall
     Yoder
     Yoho
     Young (AK)
     Young (FL)
     Young (IN)

                                NAYS--84

     Bass
     Beatty
     Becerra
     Blumenauer
     Brady (PA)
     Brown (FL)
     Butterfield
     Capuano
     Cardenas
     Carson (IN)
     Castor (FL)
     Clarke
     Clay
     Cleaver
     Clyburn
     Cohen
     Conyers
     Cummings
     Davis, Danny
     DeGette
     Delaney
     Deutch
     Dingell
     Doyle
     Edwards
     Ellison
     Engel
     Fattah
     Fudge
     Grayson
     Grijalva
     Gutierrez
     Hastings (FL)
     Holt
     Hoyer
     Huffman
     Jeffries
     Johnson (GA)
     Johnson, E. B.
     Kaptur
     Kennedy
     Kildee
     Larsen (WA)
     Lee (CA)
     Levin
     Lewis
     Maloney, Carolyn
     Matsui
     McCarthy (NY)
     McDermott
     McGovern
     Meeks
     Miller, George
     Moore
     Moran
     Nadler
     Neal
     Pallone
     Pascrell
     Payne
     Pelosi
     Perlmutter
     Pocan
     Richmond
     Roybal-Allard
     Rush
     Sanchez, Linda T.
     Sarbanes
     Schakowsky
     Scott (VA)
     Scott, David
     Serrano
     Shea-Porter
     Sires
     Smith (WA)
     Thompson (MS)
     Velazquez
     Visclosky
     Wasserman Schultz
       
     Waters
     Watt
     Welch
     Wilson (FL)
     Yarmuth

                             NOT VOTING--8

     Davis (CA)
     Doggett
     Flores
     Pearce
     Pingree (ME)
     Ryan (OH)
     Speier
     Tsongas

                              {time}  1111

  Mr. GUTIERREZ and Mrs. BEATTY changed their vote from ``yea'' to 
``nay.''
  Mrs. NEGRETE McLEOD, Mr. ISRAEL, Ms. LOFGREN, Mrs. CAPITO, Messrs. 
VELA, COURTNEY, BEN RAY LUJAN of New Mexico, POLIS, HINOJOSA, HIGGINS, 
Ms. BONAMICI, Messrs. HONDA, and TIERNEY changed their vote from 
``nay'' to ``yea.''
  So the amendment was agreed to.
  The result of the vote was announced as above recorded.
  Stated for:
  Mrs. DAVIS of California. Madam Speaker, on rollcall No. 140, had I 
been present, I would have voted ``yea.''
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The question is on the engrossment and third 
reading of the bill.
  The bill was ordered to be engrossed and read a third time, and was 
read the third time.


                           Motion to Recommit

  Mr. MAFFEI. Madam Speaker, I have a motion to recommit at the desk.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is the gentleman opposed to the bill?
  Mr. MAFFEI. In its current form, I am.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The Clerk will report the motion to 
recommit.
  The Clerk read as follows:

       Mr. Maffei moves to recommit the bill H.R. 807 to the 
     Committee on Ways and Means with instructions to report the 
     same back to the House forthwith with the following 
     amendment:
       Add at the end the following new section:

     SEC. 3. PROHIBITION ON DEFAULT THAT PAYS CHINA FIRST INSTEAD 
                   OF PROTECTING AMERICA'S SENIORS, VETERANS, AND 
                   THOSE HARMED BY NATURAL DISASTERS.

       This Act shall not take effect if it would result in the 
     United States Government defaulting on its legal obligations 
     for the first time in its history, as evidenced by the 
     Secretary of the Treasury taking any of the following 
     actions:
       (1) Making payments of debt obligations to foreign bond 
     holders, including those in China, Iran, and the Cayman 
     Islands, before making payments of debt obligations required 
     under chapter 31 of title 31, United States Code, for the 
     Deposit Insurance Fund and the National Credit Union Share 
     Insurance Fund, which insure savings for Americans.
       (2) Failing to make a payment of a debt obligation to the 
     Social Security and Medicare trust funds or redeem a debt 
     obligation held by those trust funds.
       (3) Failing to redeem a debt obligation held by a trust 
     fund providing veterans benefits, including the Veterans 
     Special Life Insurance Fund, the Veterans Reopened Insurance 
     Fund, the Armed Forces Retirement Home Fund, and the Court of 
     Veteran Appeals Retirement Fund.
       (4) Failing to redeem a debt obligation held by an 
     intragovernmental fund with the purpose of assisting 
     Americans during a natural disaster, including reserves for 
     the National Flood Insurance Program and other disaster 
     relief funds appropriated to the President.

  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, I reserve a point of order against the 
motion to recommit.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. A point of order is reserved.
  The gentleman from New York is recognized for 5 minutes in support of 
his motion.
  Mr. MAFFEI. Madam Speaker, I am offering this amendment today as the 
final amendment, which will not kill the bill or send it back to 
committee. If adopted, the bill will immediately proceed to final 
passage, as amended.
  Madam Speaker, the American people want us to work together--
Republicans and Democrats--to reduce our debt, pay our bills, and avoid 
an economic catastrophe, which would result from default. But how can 
Democrats work with the Republican leaders of this House when their 
plan for America is to default?
  Madam Speaker, Republicans today proved this by bringing forth this 
legislation, which presumes it will happen and maps out not if but what 
happens when the United States defaults.
  Their plan ensures that foreign creditors such as China, Japan, and 
OPEC countries Iran and Saudi Arabia would continue to get paid while 
we halt other payments to groups of Americans who have earned those 
benefits. This bill prioritizes Chinese lenders ahead of American 
seniors and veterans and college students. That's why it's called the 
Pay China First Act.
  The House Republican bill would stop pay for 1.4 million Active Duty 
troops and almost 800,000 activated Reserves and National Guards. It 
would end benefits for 3.4 million disabled Americans; eliminate 
education benefits and home purchasing assistance for 1.3 million 
veterans; put American small businesses that sell goods and services to 
the government on the hook for major losses; and stop payment to 
doctors and hospitals who take care of the 50 million Medicare patients 
around this country.

                              {time}  1120

  Madam Speaker, the Republican plan that we debate here today ignores 
the needs and priorities of the American people; and it does so, Madam 
Speaker, so that the Republican leadership can sidestep the political 
problem that, after being fully complicit in running up our Nation's 
credit card debt, their side doesn't want to pay the bill.
  It strains the bounds of cynicism to think that any elected leaders 
would prioritize a policy of political convenience over the well-being 
of those injured from fighting for America's freedom; but that is 
what's happening today.
  We need to come together as a Nation to fix our debt, and we need to 
do it in the right way, not on the backs of our middle class families 
and seniors, and certainly not by defaulting on the debt we owe our 
veterans.

[[Page H2552]]

  Instead of finding ways to pay China first, we should be using this 
time to find a way to balance our budget and avoid defaulting on any of 
our obligations.
  We should be working together to come up with a plan that addresses 
the very serious fiscal challenges facing this country. And these are 
not easy choices, but they are why our constituents sent us here, 
Democrats and Republicans, to answer the challenges of our time as our 
forebears did in theirs.
  The brinksmanship that Congress has put us in time and time again has 
created uncertainty in the economy. It prevents economic growth. It 
stifles job creation.
  This Republican plan will plunge our recovering economy back into a 
recession. It will raise unemployment. It might even freeze credit 
worldwide. It is a reckless plan to default for the first time in our 
Nation's history, and economists agree it will be devastating.
  What this side is proposing is nothing but a plan to fail.
  Madam Speaker, I didn't come here to plan to fail. I came here to 
focus on jobs and growth and a stronger middle class and promote a 
commonsense budget that's balanced and fair, that expands our economy 
and responsibly reduces deficit.
  Instead of prioritizing China and foreign sovereign funds, we should 
be protecting our American troops who are in harm's way as we speak, 
our veterans; our seniors who rely on Medicare and Social Security; 
American small businesses; and college students who earned Pell Grants.
  That's what this amendment does. It would stop the horrible 
consequences of default. It is a simple choice: plan to default on our 
debts or reject this plan and work together to avert catastrophe.
  Which one will my Republican colleagues choose today?
  Madam Speaker, above your august chair, and even above our great 
American Flag, the symbol of freedom, are the words: In God We Trust. 
And through good times and bad, that trust has been rewarded.
  Madam Speaker, the American people, our seniors who depend on 
Medicare, our students who have worked hard to earn a Pell Grant to pay 
for college, our small businesses who have sold their wares to the 
Federal Government at a fair price, and our veterans who have 
sacrificed for our freedom, they have put their trust in us.
  For 237 years, this Nation has paid its debts, not just some of them, 
like the ones to foreign creditors. Our forebears have always kept 
faith with the American people. They didn't pick and choose. They did 
their duty, and so must we.
  Madam Speaker, I yield back the balance of my time.
  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, I withdraw my point of order and seek time 
in opposition to the motion.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The reservation is withdrawn.
  The gentleman from Michigan is recognized for 5 minutes.
  Mr. CAMP. Madam Speaker, you know, this body just spent the last hour 
listening to the other side saying how we can't default. But the irony 
of this motion to recommit is it actually mandates default. The irony 
of this motion is that it mandates default that would send our economy 
into a tailspin. It would ensure that nobody gets paid.
  Vote ``no'' on this motion to recommit.
  I yield back the balance of my time.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. Without objection, the previous question is 
ordered on the motion to recommit.
  There was no objection.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The question is on the motion to recommit.
  The question was taken; and the Speaker pro tempore announced that 
the noes appeared to have it.


                             Recorded Vote

  Mr. MAFFEI. Madam Speaker, I demand a recorded vote.
  A recorded vote was ordered.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. This is a 5-minute vote.
  The vote was taken by electronic device, and there were--ayes 200, 
noes 227, not voting 5, as follows:

                             [Roll No. 141]

                               AYES--200

     Andrews
     Barber
     Barrow (GA)
     Bass
     Beatty
     Becerra
     Bera (CA)
     Bishop (GA)
     Bishop (NY)
     Blumenauer
     Bonamici
     Brady (PA)
     Brown (FL)
     Brownley (CA)
     Bustos
     Butterfield
     Capps
     Capuano
     Cardenas
     Carney
     Carson (IN)
     Cartwright
     Castor (FL)
     Castro (TX)
     Chu
     Cicilline
     Clarke
     Clay
     Cleaver
     Clyburn
     Cohen
     Connolly
     Conyers
     Cooper
     Costa
     Courtney
     Crowley
     Cuellar
     Cummings
     Davis (CA)
     Davis, Danny
     DeFazio
     DeGette
     Delaney
     DeLauro
     DelBene
     Deutch
     Dingell
     Doyle
     Duckworth
     Duncan (TN)
     Edwards
     Ellison
     Engel
     Enyart
     Eshoo
     Esty
     Farr
     Fattah
     Foster
     Frankel (FL)
     Fudge
     Gabbard
     Gallego
     Garamendi
     Garcia
     Grayson
     Green, Al
     Green, Gene
     Grijalva
     Gutierrez
     Hahn
     Hanabusa
     Hastings (FL)
     Heck (WA)
     Higgins
     Himes
     Hinojosa
     Holt
     Honda
     Horsford
     Hoyer
     Huffman
     Israel
     Jackson Lee
     Jeffries
     Johnson (GA)
     Johnson, E. B.
     Jones
     Kaptur
     Keating
     Kennedy
     Kildee
     Kilmer
     Kind
     Kirkpatrick
     Kuster
     Langevin
     Larsen (WA)
     Larson (CT)
     Lee (CA)
     Levin
     Lewis
     Lipinski
     Loebsack
     Lofgren
     Lowenthal
     Lowey
     Lujan Grisham (NM)
     Lujan, Ben Ray (NM)
     Lynch
     Maffei
     Maloney, Carolyn
     Maloney, Sean
     Markey
     Matheson
     Matsui
     McCarthy (NY)
     McCollum
     McDermott
     McGovern
     McIntyre
     McNerney
     Meeks
     Meng
     Michaud
     Miller, George
     Moore
     Moran
     Murphy (FL)
     Nadler
     Napolitano
     Neal
     Negrete McLeod
     Nolan
     O'Rourke
     Owens
     Pallone
     Pascrell
     Pastor (AZ)
     Payne
     Pelosi
     Perlmutter
     Peters (CA)
     Peters (MI)
     Peterson
     Pingree (ME)
     Pocan
     Polis
     Price (NC)
     Quigley
     Rahall
     Rangel
     Richmond
     Roybal-Allard
     Ruiz
     Ruppersberger
     Rush
     Ryan (OH)
     Sanchez, Linda T.
     Sanchez, Loretta
     Sarbanes
     Schakowsky
     Schiff
     Schneider
     Schrader
     Schwartz
     Scott (VA)
     Scott, David
     Serrano
     Sewell (AL)
     Shea-Porter
     Sherman
     Sinema
     Sires
     Slaughter
     Smith (WA)
     Speier
     Swalwell (CA)
     Takano
     Thompson (CA)
     Thompson (MS)
     Tierney
     Titus
     Tonko
     Tsongas
     Van Hollen
     Vargas
     Veasey
     Vela
     Velazquez
     Visclosky
     Walz
     Wasserman Schultz
     Waters
     Watt
     Waxman
     Welch
     Wilson (FL)
     Yarmuth

                               NOES--227

     Aderholt
     Alexander
     Amash
     Amodei
     Bachmann
     Bachus
     Barletta
     Barr
     Barton
     Benishek
     Bentivolio
     Bilirakis
     Bishop (UT)
     Black
     Blackburn
     Bonner
     Boustany
     Brady (TX)
     Bridenstine
     Brooks (AL)
     Brooks (IN)
     Broun (GA)
     Buchanan
     Bucshon
     Burgess
     Calvert
     Camp
     Campbell
     Cantor
     Capito
     Carter
     Cassidy
     Chabot
     Chaffetz
     Coble
     Coffman
     Cole
     Collins (GA)
     Collins (NY)
     Conaway
     Cook
     Cotton
     Cramer
     Crawford
     Crenshaw
     Culberson
     Daines
     Davis, Rodney
     Denham
     Dent
     DeSantis
     DesJarlais
     Diaz-Balart
     Duffy
     Duncan (SC)
     Ellmers
     Farenthold
     Fincher
     Fitzpatrick
     Fleischmann
     Fleming
     Forbes
     Fortenberry
     Foxx
     Franks (AZ)
     Frelinghuysen
     Gardner
     Garrett
     Gerlach
     Gibbs
     Gibson
     Gingrey (GA)
     Gohmert
     Goodlatte
     Gosar
     Gowdy
     Granger
     Graves (GA)
     Graves (MO)
     Griffin (AR)
     Griffith (VA)
     Grimm
     Guthrie
     Hall
     Hanna
     Harper
     Harris
     Hartzler
     Hastings (WA)
     Heck (NV)
     Hensarling
     Herrera Beutler
     Holding
     Hudson
     Huelskamp
     Huizenga (MI)
     Hultgren
     Hunter
     Hurt
     Issa
     Jenkins
     Johnson (OH)
     Johnson, Sam
     Jordan
     Joyce
     Kelly (PA)
     King (IA)
     King (NY)
     Kingston
     Kinzinger (IL)
     Kline
     Labrador
     LaMalfa
     Lamborn
     Lance
     Lankford
     Latham
     Latta
     LoBiondo
     Long
     Lucas
     Luetkemeyer
     Lummis
     Marchant
     Marino
     Massie
     McCarthy (CA)
     McCaul
     McClintock
     McHenry
     McKeon
     McKinley
     McMorris Rodgers
     Meadows
     Meehan
     Messer
     Mica
     Miller (FL)
     Miller (MI)
     Miller, Gary
     Mullin
     Mulvaney
     Murphy (PA)
     Neugebauer
     Noem
     Nugent
     Nunes
     Nunnelee
     Olson
     Palazzo
     Paulsen
     Perry
     Petri
     Pittenger
     Pitts
     Poe (TX)
     Pompeo
     Posey
     Price (GA)
     Radel
     Reed
     Reichert
     Renacci
     Ribble
     Rice (SC)
     Rigell
     Roby
     Roe (TN)
     Rogers (AL)
     Rogers (KY)
     Rogers (MI)
     Rohrabacher
     Rokita
     Rooney
     Ros-Lehtinen
     Roskam
     Ross
     Rothfus
     Royce
     Runyan
     Ryan (WI)
     Salmon
     Scalise
     Schock
     Schweikert
     Scott, Austin
     Sensenbrenner
     Sessions
     Shimkus
     Shuster
     Simpson
     Smith (NE)
     Smith (NJ)
     Smith (TX)
     Southerland
     Stewart
     Stivers
     Stockman
     Stutzman
     Terry
     Thompson (PA)
     Thornberry
     Tiberi
     Tipton
     Turner
     Upton
     Valadao
     Wagner
     Walberg
     Walden
     Walorski
     Weber (TX)
     Webster (FL)
     Wenstrup
     Westmoreland
     Whitfield
     Williams
     Wilson (SC)
     Wittman
     Wolf
     Womack
     Woodall
     Yoder
     Yoho
     Young (AK)
     Young (FL)
     Young (IN)

[[Page H2553]]



                             NOT VOTING--5

     Braley (IA)
     Doggett
     Flores
     Kelly (IL)
     Pearce

                              {time}  1132

  So the motion to recommit was rejected.
  The result of the vote was announced as above recorded.
  Stated for:
  Mr. BRALEY of Iowa. Madam Speaker, on rollcall No. 141 had I been 
present, I would have voted ``aye.''
  Ms. KELLY of Illinois. Madam Speaker, on rollcall No. 141 I was 
unavoidably detained. Had I been present, I would have voted ``aye.''
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. The question is on the passage of the bill.
  The question was taken; and the Speaker pro tempore announced that 
the ayes appeared to have it.
  Mr. CROWLEY. Madam Speaker, on that I demand the yeas and nays.
  The yeas and nays were ordered.
  The SPEAKER pro tempore. This is a 5-minute vote.
  The vote was taken by electronic device, and there were--yeas 221, 
nays 207, not voting 4, as follows:

                             [Roll No. 142]

                               YEAS--221

     Aderholt
     Alexander
     Amodei
     Bachmann
     Bachus
     Barletta
     Barr
     Barton
     Benishek
     Bentivolio
     Bilirakis
     Bishop (UT)
     Black
     Blackburn
     Bonner
     Boustany
     Brady (TX)
     Bridenstine
     Brooks (AL)
     Brooks (IN)
     Broun (GA)
     Buchanan
     Bucshon
     Burgess
     Calvert
     Camp
     Campbell
     Cantor
     Capito
     Carter
     Cassidy
     Chabot
     Chaffetz
     Coble
     Coffman
     Cole
     Collins (GA)
     Collins (NY)
     Conaway
     Cook
     Cotton
     Cramer
     Crawford
     Crenshaw
     Culberson
     Daines
     Davis, Rodney
     Denham
     DeSantis
     DesJarlais
     Diaz-Balart
     Duffy
     Duncan (SC)
     Duncan (TN)
     Ellmers
     Farenthold
     Fincher
     Fitzpatrick
     Fleischmann
     Fleming
     Forbes
     Fortenberry
     Foxx
     Franks (AZ)
     Frelinghuysen
     Gardner
     Garrett
     Gerlach
     Gibbs
     Gingrey (GA)
     Gohmert
     Goodlatte
     Gosar
     Gowdy
     Granger
     Graves (GA)
     Graves (MO)
     Griffin (AR)
     Griffith (VA)
     Guthrie
     Hall
     Hanna
     Harper
     Harris
     Hartzler
     Hastings (WA)
     Heck (NV)
     Hensarling
     Herrera Beutler
     Holding
     Hudson
     Huelskamp
     Huizenga (MI)
     Hultgren
     Hunter
     Hurt
     Issa
     Jenkins
     Johnson (OH)
     Johnson, Sam
     Jordan
     Joyce
     Kelly (PA)
     King (IA)
     King (NY)
     Kingston
     Kinzinger (IL)
     Kline
     Labrador
     LaMalfa
     Lamborn
     Lance
     Lankford
     Latham
     Latta
     Long
     Lucas
     Luetkemeyer
     Lummis
     Marchant
     Marino
     McCarthy (CA)
     McCaul
     McClintock
     McHenry
     McKeon
     McKinley
     McMorris Rodgers
     Meadows
     Meehan
     Messer
     Mica
     Miller (FL)
     Miller (MI)
     Miller, Gary
     Mullin
     Mulvaney
     Murphy (PA)
     Neugebauer
     Noem
     Nugent
     Nunes
     Nunnelee
     Olson
     Palazzo
     Paulsen
     Perry
     Petri
     Pittenger
     Pitts
     Poe (TX)
     Pompeo
     Posey
     Price (GA)
     Radel
     Reed
     Reichert
     Renacci
     Ribble
     Rice (SC)
     Rigell
     Roby
     Roe (TN)
     Rogers (AL)
     Rogers (KY)
     Rogers (MI)
     Rohrabacher
     Rokita
     Rooney
     Ros-Lehtinen
     Roskam
     Ross
     Rothfus
     Royce
     Runyan
     Ryan (WI)
     Salmon
     Scalise
     Schock
     Schweikert
     Scott, Austin
     Sensenbrenner
     Sessions
     Shimkus
     Shuster
     Simpson
     Smith (NE)
     Smith (NJ)
     Smith (TX)
     Southerland
     Stewart
     Stivers
     Stockman
     Stutzman
     Terry
     Thompson (PA)
     Thornberry
     Tiberi
     Tipton
     Turner
     Upton
     Valadao
     Wagner
     Walberg
     Walden
     Walorski
     Weber (TX)
     Webster (FL)
     Wenstrup
     Westmoreland
     Whitfield
     Williams
     Wilson (SC)
     Wittman
     Womack
     Woodall
     Yoder
     Yoho
     Young (AK)
     Young (FL)
     Young (IN)

                               NAYS--207

     Amash
     Andrews
     Barber
     Barrow (GA)
     Bass
     Beatty
     Becerra
     Bera (CA)
     Bishop (GA)
     Bishop (NY)
     Blumenauer
     Bonamici
     Brady (PA)
     Braley (IA)
     Brown (FL)
     Brownley (CA)
     Bustos
     Butterfield
     Capps
     Capuano
     Cardenas
     Carney
     Carson (IN)
     Cartwright
     Castor (FL)
     Castro (TX)
     Chu
     Cicilline
     Clarke
     Clay
     Cleaver
     Clyburn
     Cohen
     Connolly
     Conyers
     Cooper
     Costa
     Courtney
     Crowley
     Cuellar
     Cummings
     Davis (CA)
     Davis, Danny
     DeFazio
     DeGette
     Delaney
     DeLauro
     DelBene
     Dent
     Deutch
     Dingell
     Doyle
     Duckworth
     Edwards
     Ellison
     Engel
     Enyart
     Eshoo
     Esty
     Farr
     Fattah
     Foster
     Frankel (FL)
     Fudge
     Gabbard
     Gallego
     Garamendi
     Garcia
     Gibson
     Grayson
     Green, Al
     Green, Gene
     Grijalva
     Grimm
     Gutierrez
     Hahn
     Hanabusa
     Hastings (FL)
     Heck (WA)
     Higgins
     Himes
     Hinojosa
     Holt
     Honda
     Horsford
     Hoyer
     Huffman
     Israel
     Jackson Lee
     Jeffries
     Johnson (GA)
     Johnson, E. B.
     Jones
     Kaptur
     Keating
     Kelly (IL)
     Kennedy
     Kildee
     Kilmer
     Kind
     Kirkpatrick
     Kuster
     Langevin
     Larsen (WA)
     Larson (CT)
     Lee (CA)
     Levin
     Lewis
     Lipinski
     LoBiondo
     Loebsack
     Lofgren
     Lowenthal
     Lowey
     Lujan Grisham (NM)
     Lujan, Ben Ray (NM)
     Lynch
     Maffei
     Maloney, Carolyn
     Maloney, Sean
     Markey
     Massie
     Matheson
     Matsui
     McCarthy (NY)
     McCollum
     McDermott
     McGovern
     McIntyre
     McNerney
     Meeks
     Meng
     Michaud
     Miller, George
     Moore
     Moran
     Murphy (FL)
     Nadler
     Napolitano
     Neal
     Negrete McLeod
     Nolan
     O'Rourke
     Owens
     Pallone
     Pascrell
     Pastor (AZ)
     Payne
     Pelosi
     Perlmutter
     Peters (CA)
     Peters (MI)
     Pingree (ME)
     Pocan
     Polis
     Price (NC)
     Quigley
     Rahall
     Rangel
     Richmond
     Roybal-Allard
     Ruiz
     Ruppersberger
     Rush
     Ryan (OH)
     Sanchez, Linda T.
     Sanchez, Loretta
     Sarbanes
     Schakowsky
     Schiff
     Schneider
     Schrader
     Schwartz
     Scott (VA)
     Scott, David
     Serrano
     Sewell (AL)
     Shea-Porter
     Sherman
     Sinema
     Sires
     Slaughter
     Smith (WA)
     Speier
     Swalwell (CA)
     Takano
     Thompson (CA)
     Thompson (MS)
     Tierney
     Titus
     Tonko
     Tsongas
     Van Hollen
     Vargas
     Veasey
     Vela
     Velazquez
     Visclosky
     Walz
     Wasserman Schultz
     Waters
     Watt
     Waxman
     Welch
     Wilson (FL)
     Wolf
     Yarmuth

                             NOT VOTING--4

     Doggett
     Flores
     Pearce
     Peterson

                              {time}  1139

  So the bill was passed.
  The result of the vote was announced as above recorded.
  A motion to reconsider was laid on the table.

                          ____________________