Congress to 'kick the can down the road' dealing with debt ceiling problem

Former rep. said long term debt remains

WASHINGTON, D.C. - While Congress appears to have beaten a deadline to resolve the impasse that could have led to the first federal financial default in U.S. history, the solution is only temporary.

"They're going to kick the can down the road," said Dan Miller, a former U.S. Representative from Sarasota who served in the 1990's and early 2000's.

"They need to address the debt issue. That's the key to debt ceiling," Miller said.

Senate leaders announced an agreement that will open the government until January 15, and move the debt ceiling deadline to February 7.  Conservatives have said they will not block a vote on this bill, indicating they are finally willing to compromise, at least until the next deadline next year.

"The compromise we reached will provide our economy with the stability that it desperately needs," said Sen. Harry Reid, (D) Nevada and Senate Majority Leader.  

"This is far less than any of us hoped for," said Sen. Mitch McConnell, (R) Kentucky and Senate Minority Leader.  "But it is far better than what some had sought."

President Obama, who had refused to tie the Affordable Care Act into any negotiations to reopen the government, said he was optimistic that both sides had found middle ground.

"Amongst senate democrats and republicans is a recognition that there are ways for us to this that doesn't damage the economy," Obama said.

Miller, who served on the House Appropriations and Budget committees, said this agreement failed to deal with the long term issues facing the nation's debt.  Miller said if the parties lock into another impasse at the start of the year, it could create more potential problems for the economy.

"The wake up call will be a major drop in the stock market," Miller said.  "That affects everyone's pension plans, retirement plans.  It's not just the wealthy people affected by the stock market."

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