Georgia senators split on debt vote

ATLANTA — Georgia’s two U.S. Senators split on a proposal to increase the national debt, which President Obama on Tuesday signed into law.

Sen. Johnny Isakson, a Republican, voted in favor of the resolution while Sen. Saxby Chambliss, also a Republican, voted in opposition.

“While I would have preferred more spending cuts, I am pleased to have been a part of a meaningful fiscal restraint that sets a precedent that there will never be a debt ceiling increase without cuts,” Isakson said in a statement.

“From now on, whenever the President asks for a debt ceiling increase, it will be demanded that there be spending cuts equal to any increase, which is an historic precedent and a first step in the right direction toward ending the reckless spending in Washington,” Isakson said.

For his part, Chambliss said that Congress has “shown time and again that it is incapable of staying within spending limits.” The bill, he added, didn’t actually address the nation’s debt.

“Because cuts were not deep enough and we didn’t provide a plan that will ultimately pay off our debts, we took no concrete steps toward reducing America’s public debt,” Chambliss said in a statement. “In fact, we are still borrowing $4 billion a day, and after the passage of this bill are projected to have an increase of some $10 trillion in debt over the next decade.

“Our fiscal crisis is the most important challenge we face,” Chambliss added. “I will continue to work with my colleagues to fight for fiscal reforms that will put us on a path to reduce our deficit and debt, and to balance our nation’s books through a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution.”

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