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Markey: GOP uses economic uncertainty for political benefit

WASHINGTON — US Representative Edward J. Markey, the dean of the Massachusetts congressional delegation, said this afternoon that Republicans were attempting to bring the global economy down for their own political benefit.

“They are allowing the pointed gun of economic uncertainty to continue to be pointed at our recovery,’’ the Malden Democrat said this afternoon in an interview.

“Rather than resolve the economic issues, what we’re seeing is that the Tea Party has congressional Republicans wrapped around its finger, but it’s the American people who are getting squeezed.’’

Markey also went further, saying that Republicans were almost wishing that the economy would get worse so that it would help them at the ballot box next year.

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“The strategy that Republicans have is purely political because they believe that economic uncertainty is their friend — and a lack of investment dollars coming off the sidelines to reinvigorate our economy is in their best political interests in Nov. 2012,’’ Markey said. “That is their plan in a nutshell.’’

Markey is critical of a plan being pushed by House Speaker John Boehner to cut spending by $1.2 trillion and allow the debt ceiling to increase long enough for the government to keep borrowing money for another seven or eight months. It would establish a system to allow the debt limit to be extended further, as long as a bipartisan commission can find nearly $1.8 trillion in additional cuts.

Democrats and President Obama have been adamantly opposed to that approach, saying the debt limit should be increased through the 2012 elections. For that reason, Republicans have suggested it is the Democrats who are putting electoral politics ahead of what should be a substantive policy debate.

“I know the president is worried about his next election, but my God, shouldn’t we be worried about the country?’’ Boehner said yesterday on “Fox News Sunday.’’ “We’ve got a budget deficit of $1.5 trillion, borrowing 42 cents on every dollar we spend, we have a 14 and a half trillion dollar nation debt. It’s time to get serious about stopping the spending here in Washington, D.C.’’

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