Senate Passes Debt Ceiling Bill on August 2, 2011
Senate Vote: Debt Ceiling & Deficit Reduction Bill Passes 74-26
The Budget Control Act of 2011 (debt ceiling and deficit reduction bill), which passed the House yesterday, has passed the Senate in a roll call vote of 74-26. The debt ceiling bill needed 60 votes to pass.
President Barack Obama said he would sign the bill should it pass, so the US will squeak in under the debt ceiling extension deadline. Obama is set to address the nation shortly after the Senate vote: watch Obama's speech live.
The US will not default on its debt, but the risk of a credit-rating downgrade remains.
Before the vote, Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell praised the direction of the legislation, saying Congress had "engaged in an important debate" in recent weeks.
"The push-and-pull people saw in Washington this week was not gridlock, it was the will of the people working itself out," Mr McConnell said.
McConnell's self-congratulatory view is far more charitable than that of many voters, though, who saw their economy held hostage by special interests: "the will of the people" had almost nothing to do with this whole debacle.