Oklahoma delegation issue statements on debt-ceiling deal, ending shutdown

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WASHINGTON – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released a statement after House members met with President Obama at the White House and presented a proposal to temporarily raise the debt ceiling and prevent default.

“I applaud Speaker John Boehner for his leadership and continued efforts to find solutions in this difficult shutdown situation,” said Cole. “The president’s willingness to engage and review this debt ceiling proposal is a step in the right direction and shows that neither side is willing to place the full faith and credit of the United States at risk.

“As we continue to work together to find common ground on a long-term budget solution, we must remain committed to the thousands of furloughed federal workers who need and want to return to work and the millions of Americans inconvenienced by the lapse in government services. While we are close to solving the debt ceiling crisis, we cannot forget the current shutdown at hand. The need to negotiate on a funding deal must be addressed, and I’m pleased that we are still working toward a solution that will reopen the government.

“This current debt ceiling proposal shows that House Republicans are willing to meet the president halfway, but the president must also move toward us and engage in real negotiations,” concluded Cole.

Lankford said we shouldn't let this opportunity go to waste

House Republican Policy Committee Chairman James Lankford also met with President Obama. In advance of that meeting, Chairman Lankford issued the following statement:

“For two weeks, we have asked President Obama and Senate Democrats to simply come to the table and discuss the policy differences that divide us. I’m pleased the President has finally accepted our offer and I hope we can have an honest discussion on how to move forward. Our team will go to the White House in good faith to talk through real solutions to end the government shutdown and deal with the impending debt limit deadline,” said Lankford. “I hope we do not end up simply in a photo-op meeting while being told he still refuses to negotiate. Washington does not need to create good politics; we need to create real solutions. I look forward to a genuine conversation about how to solve some of these issues.”

On day ten of the government shutdown and a week until the government could default on our debt, there is finally an encouraging sign.

House Speaker John Boehner promised to hike the nation's borrowing limit, temporarily if President Obama will bargain on the budget and the White House agreed.

The Boehner proposal would put off default next Thursday by raising the borrowing limit for six weeks, if president Obama agrees to negotiations.

"And I would hope that the president would look at this as an opportunity and a good faith effort on our part to move half way. Halfway to what he's demanded in order to have these conversations begin," said Speaker Boehner.

"Halfway," because Tea Party republicans point out that the government shutdown continues over healthcare.

"When it comes to the issues dealing with Obamacare we're gonna continue to hold our ground," said republican Congressman Raul Labrador of Idaho.

If the Tea Party does not block the Boehner deal on the debt ceiling, President Obama would sign it

"Because he thinks we need to avoid default," said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney.

Default could drive down home sales, real estate agent Suzanne Des Marais warns.

"I worry about people changing their minds," said Des Marais.

"If they're nervous, if they don't have the stability in their jobs they're not going to go forward and purchase a home"

But when Treasury Secretary Jack Lew warned about default today, Republican Congressman Michael Enzi of Wyoming mocked him.

"The sky is falling and the earth will erupt. Wyoming families aren't buying these arguments. They're saying you can't spend more than you take in," said Enzi said.

But, with 7 days until default, a deal looks possible and with the two sides sitting down there's a chance they could also resolve the shutdown and reopen the federal government.

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