The Daily Southerner, Tarboro, NC

Local News

January 28, 2013

Butterfield, Holding agree on ‘No Budget, No Pay’

TARBORO — There are some differences between the two members of the House of Representatives who represent Edgecombe County.

G. K. Butterfield, who represents residents in the 1st Congressional District, is in his sixth term while Holding, who represents the 13th District, is in his first.

Oh, and they sit on opposite sides of the aisle — Butterfield is a Democrat and Holding is a Republican.

And while the two may have their differences in regards to some issues, they were of like mind on Wednesday when the House of Representatives voted 285-144 to pass H. R. 325, commonly known as the “No Budget, No Pay Act."

H.R. 325 extends the debt ceiling through May 19 and requires both the House and Senate to pass a budget by April 15. If either chamber fails to pass a budget by the statutory deadline, the members of that chamber would have their pay withheld. Last year, the House passed a budget for fiscal year 2013, but it has been 1,367 days since the Senate passed a budget.

The extension of the debt ceiling means the United States will not default on its obligations.

"While I would have preferred a long-term plan to avoid future battles over America's borrowing authority, voting to temporarily raise the debt ceiling was necessary to avoid default on our obligations, provide some stability to our capital markets, and peace of mind to the American people," Butterfield said.  "Both the Democratic-controlled Senate and the White House have indicated they do not oppose the three-month extension, which allows our nation to meet its financial responsibilities."

Holding said it is easy to break down the legislation.

"The premise of this legislation is simple.  The House has demonstrated that it is willing to pass a budget that cuts spending and pays down debt. It's time for the Senate to do the same. Passing a budget is the most basic responsibility of governing and it is unacceptable that the Senate has failed to act accordingly in almost four years. I hope the Senate will immediately take up this legislation pass a budget. Otherwise, they have not earned their pay."

Holding also noted the fact that it has been four years since the Democratic-controlled Senate has passed a budget. While some call the move a gimmick engineered by House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) are claiming it to be unconstitutional based on the 27th Amendment, Holding said the fact of the matter is that is places the discussion of the budget squarely in front of the Senate.

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