From TALKING POINTS MEMO:
Now that Standard & Poors has confirmed that the chorus of default doubters in the GOP was part of what spooked them into downgrading the U.S. credit rating, Republicans will do all they can to pretend that they never questioned the risk of missing payment obligations, or allowing borrowing authority to lapse. But they sure did! Here’s a long, partial timeline of influential Republicans either vouchsafing default, or downplaying the consequences of passing the August 2 deadline without raising the debt limit.
Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), May 17, 2011: “You want to make sure that the bondholder has confidence that the government’s going to be able to pay them…. That’s what I’m hearing from most people, which is if a bondholder misses a payment for a day or two or three or four what is more important that you’re putting the government in a materially better position to be able to pay their bonds later on.”
Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), May 19, 2011: “The government is not to be trusted with more of your money, so I will refuse to allow them to borrow more. Now is it a good idea to default? No! But this is a false claim being promoted by big-government advocates. We can simply spend what we take in!”
Sen. Jim DeMint (R-SC), June 24, 2011 on administration warnings of “catastrophic consequences” of not raising debt limit: “I don’t believe them, it’s not true.”
Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), June 26, 2011: “It isn’t true that the government would default on its debt,” Bachmann told CBS’ Bob Schieffer. “Because, very simply, the Treasury Secretary can pay the interest on the debt first, and then, from there, we have to just prioritize our spending….I have no intention of voting to raise the debt ceiling.”
Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), July 13, 2011 on catastrophic consequences of not raising the debt ceiling: “I would encourage the Speaker not to believe the President anymore when the President says things like that.”
Rep. Steve King (R-IA), July 19, 2011: “America is not going to default. We’re just trying to scare people into being stampeded into a debt-ceiling increase. But we would hold our full faith in credit together regardless, unless the president had decided to punish America by refusing to pay our bills… I think the American people understand what I’ve said: It’s not default. They’ve been calling it default to try to stampede people into taking a bad deal here in this Congress… The American people understand this. They understand at least intuitively that it would be the president who would willfully default if there’s to be a default.”
See the rest of the list by clicking on the TALKING POINTS MEMO link.