Friday July 08, 2011 | 07:13 AM

Rep. Chellie Pingree is one of two dozen House Democrats who have sent a letter to President Obama slamming the idea of cutting spending on Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid as part of a debt ceiling deal.

Pingree, D-1st, is reacting to reports that Obama is considering accepting cuts to the massive entitlement programs as part of a deal that would have Republicans accept raising government revenues through closing some tax loopholes.

While House Democrats are balking at any type of entitlement spending cuts, many Republicans, particularly in the House, are leery of raising taxes of any type. Sen. Susan Collins, R-Maine, is among a group of Senate Republicans who have said eliminating certain tax loopholes, with the ethanol subsidy one Collins is aiming at, could be part of a deal.

Pingree wants to produce more government revenue by allowing the Bush era tax cuts on the wealthy to expire, but says the entitlement programs should be off the table in the negotiations to raise the $14.3 trillion debt ceiling.

"Raising the debt ceiling has nothing to do with spending and borrowing," Pingree said in a statement this morning. "The decision to borrow money happened when the last president started two wars and gave huge tax breaks to the rich. THe debt ceiling is abouit paying our bills and meeting our obligations."

About this Blog

Subscribe to the
Maine on the Hill RSS

About the Author

Kevin Miller is Washington bureau chief for the Portland Press Herald and MaineToday Media. He has worked as a journalist in Maine for 6 ½ years, covering the environment, politics and the State House. Before arriving in Maine, he wrote about politics, government and education for newspapers in Virginia and Maryland.
Kevin can be reached at 317-6256 or

Subscribe to the
Maine on the Hill RSS

Previous entries

March 2014

February 2014

January 2014

December 2013

November 2013

October 2013


September 2013

August 2013

July 2013

June 2013

May 2013

April 2013

March 2013

February 2013

January 2013

December 2012

November 2012

October 2012

September 2012

April 2012

March 2012

February 2012

January 2012

December 2011

November 2011

October 2011

September 2011

August 2011

July 2011

June 2011

May 2011

April 2011

March 2011

February 2011

Further Discussion

Here at we value our readers and are committed to growing our community by encouraging you to add to the discussion. To ensure conscientious dialogue we have implemented a strict no-bullying policy. To participate, you must follow our Terms of Use.

Questions about the article? Add them below and we’ll try to answer them or do a follow-up post as soon as we can. Technical problems? Email them to us with an exact description of the problem. Make sure to include:
  • type of computer or mobile device your are using
  • exact operating system and browser you are viewing the site on (TIP: You can easily determine your operating system here.)
Prefer to respond privately? Email us here.