NETWORK Statement on Debt Ceiling Framework

May 28, 2023

The U.S. economy’s full faith and credit have been safeguarded by President Biden through the debt ceiling deal framework, averting economic collapse and protecting American families. This promise made by Mr. Biden has been fulfilled. We are grateful to the President and his team for fighting on behalf of the common good to protect life-giving programs that serve vulnerable people and the planet.

While the final deal is a significant improvement over House-passed legislation, the Limit, Save and Grow Act, it will still cause harm to millions. Troubling elements include provisions that will put at risk food assistance for very low-income older adults. This policy will increase hunger and poverty among that group and runs contrary to our nation’s values. The deficit should not be shouldered by those struggling to survive poverty. The wealthy and corporations who directly benefited from deficit-busting tax cuts must be held accountable and must contribute. House leadership also conditioned the resolution of the crisis on the removal of billions of dollars for the IRS set to prosecute wealthy tax cheaters. In sum, House leadership – poised to pass a new deficit-exploding tax bill for the wealthy and corporations in June – demanded the vulnerable pay our nation’s deficit while giving rich tax cheats a free ride.

As a cornerstone of Catholic social teaching, NETWORK, our Catholic Sisters, and our supporters across the country advocate with the most vulnerable in our country to end poverty. The demand made by House leadership to condition raising the debt ceiling on cuts to programs that struggling families and communities rely on, rather than asking the wealthy to pay their fair share, is a moral failure. House leadership’s demand to hold our economy hostage to exact painful cuts to vital programs violates basic principles of justice. NETWORK is committed to finding a path to abolish the debt ceiling and end the absurd debt ceiling hostage-taking that works contrary to democratic norms and the common good.

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One thought on “NETWORK Statement on Debt Ceiling Framework

  1. Barbara Jennings

    This is a sobering summary of the House-passed legislation. All the public relations news this weekend was on the Senate!
    I suggest all NETWORK members read Matthew Desmond’s book Poverty in America, 2023. Mr. Desmond speaks of the very same phenomena: The IRS should be free to prosecute the wealthy for tax cheating, both personally and corporately. But I understand that now the IRS staff will be cut again.


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