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Here is why I voted no:

Last night I voted "No" on the debt ceiling bill. Here's why:

This bill has three big problems.

First, it sets up a cycle in which Republicans continuously hold Democratic presidents hostage over the debt ceiling. This is enormously destructive for the issues we care about.

In addition, I've held more than two dozen town halls across the state since January, and this bill will undermine the programs that address citizens' top concerns: affordable housing; mental health; stopping fentanyl; and expanding child care opportunities.

I will not throw Oregonians under the bus.

This bill is also a climate catastrophe. It makes the Mountain Valley Pipeline exempt from all environmental laws.

And it sets the massively corrupt precedent of moving any court challenges to the Mountain Valley Pipeline from one court jurisdiction to a more favorable jurisdiction at the request of the powerful pipeline company.

And the bill rewrites our bedrock environmental laws, serving the fossil fuel barons by allowing corporations to write their own environmental impact statements and make other changes designed to thwart oversight.

We've never done anything like this before, and we shouldn't do it now.

It is critical that we don't default on treasury bonds, but the president has the executive power to stop that from happening. He should have used that power.

Virtually nothing in this bill reflects Oregon values or priorities, and it contains a whole lot of stuff that will hurt families.

I was elected to represent the great state of Oregon, and to strive to make life better for Oregonians – not worse. That is why I could not in good conscience support this bill.


Posted on June 2, 2023.

Born in the small town of Myrtle Creek, Oregon, Jeff Merkley has never lost touch with his working class roots.

As a U.S. Senator, he works every day to create opportunity for working families, stop the corruption of our democracy, and tackle the climate crisis.

A workhorse and a progressive champion, Jeff Merkley is leading a movement to get our country back on track.

Meet Jeff

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