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Debt deal reached, Congress still tangled up in blue and red

Speaker Kevin McCarthy spoke to reporters as he walked to the floor of the House chambers at the Capitol in Washington on June 6.Anna Moneymaker/Getty

Far-right caucus in House can’t reasonably be called ‘conservative’

In “Fallout on debt bill slows House” (Page A2, June 7), the Associated Press reporter calls members of the Freedom Caucus “some of the same conservative Republicans who tried to stop the debt ceiling bill” last week. Let’s call things by their right names: I always thought conservatives respected the Constitution, trusted legal precedents, protected capitalism, were suspicious of government interference in private life, and trusted fair elections. The MAGA Republicans in the House (and Senate) are not conservatives. I’d call them radical nihilists or know-nothing subversives or substance-free reactionary charlatans. Truth makes them jumpy and irritable. Even a demagogue like Barry Goldwater wouldn’t recognize them. They should make us very nervous.


David Gullette

Newton Corner

No kudos here for members of Mass. delegation who voted against the debt deal

President Biden put it well when he said, “The only way American democracy can function is through compromise and consensus.” Thus it is sad to see our two Massachusetts senators, Ed Markey and Elizabeth Warren, and two of the representatives in our delegation, James McGovern and Ayanna Pressley, vote against the Biden-backed compromise to avoid a national default that could have cost 8 million US jobs. This puts them in the same boat with the right-wing zealots who also rejected compromise.

The votes of Markey, Warren, McGovern, and Pressley can mean only one of two things: that they were willing to see the nation default for the first time in history, or that they cynically calculated that their votes wouldn’t make a difference, thus allowing them to posture as left-wing heroes without causing default. Neither of these motives is admirable or worthy of our respect.

H.D.S. Greenway


Tip for Democrats the next time a GOP president is elected: Two can play at this game

You’d think the Democrats might have learned a lesson after the 2011 negotiations around the debt ceiling. But more than 10 years later, they found themselves in a similar situation and again ceded concessions to the GOP to avoid an economic catastrophe.


Here’s some advice for the Democrats: The next time you find yourselves in control of the House when there’s a Republican in the Oval Office, please tell that president that you’d be happy to approve an increase in the debt ceiling as soon as the GOP agrees to rolling back the tax rate on the super-wealthy to the pre-Reagan level. Then let’s see how these so-called fiscally responsible Republicans react.

Barry Brodsky