Perry: Threats of a Debt Ceiling Shutdown 'Bit of a Stretch'

Texas Gov. Rick Perry is reportedly dismissing the panic over the debt ceiling and a possible debt default as overblown.

During a Houston bill signing ceremony Wednesday, the potential presidential contender assured that tax revenues would still be collected and the wheels of government would not come to a grinding halt August 3 if a comprise was not reached.

"I think this threat that somehow or another, the world's going to come to an end and the threat of we're not going to be able to pay our bills is a bit of a stretch," he told reporters.

Like the Tea Partiers urging Republicans to continue their stonewall approach, Perry expressed the idea that government must focus on spending cuts rather than raising the debt ceiling.

"I'm frustrated along with the rest of Americans, but the fact of the matter is ... we've spent too much money, we've gotten our house in bad shape and we need to stop spending," he said.

According to The Associated Press, Perry said he supports a cut, cap and balance approach, but remained mum on House Speaker John Boehner’s recent budget plan.

Boehner's debt ceiling plan would cut the deficit by about $850 billion in 10 years, less than the $1.2 trillion claimed.

On Capitol Hill, stalwart Republicans have been moving away from the plan. Boehner addressed the waning support during a private meeting and used tough language to rally Republicans behind his plan.

Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) also criticized House Republicans for thinking that President Barack Obama and Democrats will get the blame for a default if they refuse to increase the nation's debt ceiling.

McCain called that kind of thinking "bizarro" and told freshman lawmakers to follow seasoned Republicans who "know better."

Tea Party Republican Rep. Joe Walsh (R-Ill.) responded on Laura Ingraham's radio show stating, "We have got to be willing to have a showdown, and we have got to be willing to go to midnight Friday night and be bold, and I wish our leadership would."

Perry has not officially declared if or when he will become an official Republican candidate for the presidency.

However, there is a radio ad asking Iowans to support him as a write-in candidate in the August 13 Ames Straw Poll. The ad is sponsored by limited government group GrowPAC. The New York group has announced its support for a Perry presidency and is campaigning for him in the caucus state.

Additionally, a new poll shows that Perry is the favorite among southern Republicans for the party's 2012 presidential nomination.

Perry recently told the Des Moines Register, "I'm not ready to tell you that I'm ready to announce that I'm in. But I'm getting more and more comfortable every day that this is what I've been called to do. This is what America needs."

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