U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer wants Democrats and Republicans to put politics aside and come to an agreement on the debt ceiling before the Aug. 2 deadline.
Schumer, on a conference call with reporters Thursday, said not raising the debt ceiling would have a "devastating effect" on the country. He also released a report showing how a default would impact New Yorkers.
"Defaulting would be a disaster for every New York family," Schumer said.
Schumer's report found that there are 178,691 mortgages in the Central New York region. Families could pay an estimated $23,403,534 more in credit card interest (that's a region total, not the per family cost) and families across the region would pay an estimated $157,318,200 for food, gas and utilities (again, that's a region total).
"At a time when the economy is still in rough shape, the consequence of default would be catastrophic," Schumer said.
Schumer is hoping for compromise. He said both parties need to meet in the middle and "leave their entrenched corners."
"The bottom line is we need a bipartisan agreement on the debt ceiling as quickly as possible," he said.
So what does Schumer think a debt deal should include? He said there should be a balance between spending cuts and more revenue. Tax breaks for the wealthy and large corporations, he said, should be on the table. But wasteful spending should also be looked at, he said.
"Everything should be on the table and it shouldn't be just focused on the middle class," Schumer said.
Schumer did say some Republicans have already shown a willingness to compromise in the Senate. But he said from House Republicans, there has been "very little compromise."
In a recent trip to Cayuga County, I asked Schumer about the ongoing debt ceiling debate and he shared his thoughts on what should happen.
While Schumer was on the call, the New York Times tweeted an alert that House Speaker John Boehner and the White House were close to a deal to raise the debt ceiling and make cuts. But Boehner, in a tweet minutes later, said the report was "false" and the White House also tweeted that the report was false.
We are more than week from the Aug. 2 deadline. What do you think? Will a debt ceiling deal get done? And what do you think the deal should include? Only spending cuts or a mix of spending cuts and tax increases on the wealthy?