All eyes are on Washington in anticipation of a resolution to the debt ceiling talks between President Obama and GOP leaders of the House and Senate. However, Sen. Jim DeMint (R-S.C.) has laid the issue of the debt ceiling at the feet of the White House by saying they are “creating a crisis.”
“I don’t think we’ll have any resolution,” DeMint said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.” “We’ve known this for six months and there has not been one debate on the Senate or House floor how to fix it.”
DeMint has long been a Tea Party favorite by focusing on fiscal issues and thinks the White House is using issues in order to grandstand for the nation.
For example, Obama threw corporate jet owners against the wall by wanting to close tax loopholes that allow write-offs. DeMint maintains the White House is using the issue as a ploy to use tax hikes as a bargaining chip with Republicans.
“The only reason they’re bringing it back now is so that they can appear to compromise by taking it off the table,” he said.
DeMint was also critical of Democrats for saying the nation would have to default if the $14.3 trillion debt ceiling isn’t increased by Aug. 2, the day Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner says was the drop-dead date.
“We’re not going to default,” said DeMint. “We may have to cut government programs but we’re going to pay our debts as they come due. We will pay our debts and it is irresponsible for Secretary Geithner to suggest we wouldn’t.”
The South Carolina senator was appearing on the program to push his new book “Saving Freedom.”
Weighing in on the Republican Presidential primary, DeMint said he was “disappointed” in Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) for not signing the pledge to support his “cut, cap and balance” bill.
“I am disappointed,” DeMint said Wednesday on CNN’s “American Morning.” “We have to stop spending more than we’re bringing in.”
Bachmann, also a Tea Party favorite, has been hesitant to sign the pledge because she wants a tougher bargain that leverages the President’s need for increased federal government borrowing authority, with the ultimate goal being to dismantle Obama’s unpopular health care law.
DeMint is calling on all Republican presidential candidates to sign the pledge and thus far has only found support from former Minnesota governor Tim Pawlenty and former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney.
DeMint is hoping to use the “cut, cap and balance” pledge to gain his support but so far has not declared who he will support. However, the senator did endorse Romney in the 2008 presidential campaign and says Romney has a good chance of winning the South Carolina primary.
And on the issue of Romney’s religion, “not an issue,” said DeMint.