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VOTE: H 1-7. Assumption Act

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1st Congress

IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES OF THE UNITED STATES

Mr. Owens of Virginia, for himself, introduced,

A BILL,

An Act making provision for the payment of the Debt of the United States.

Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled,

 

Sec. 1.

The United States shall assume certificates of state war-incurred debts and to issue federal securities in exchange.

  • New Hampshire - $300,000
  • Massachusetts - $4,000,000
  • Rhode Island and Providence Plantations - $200,000
  • Connecticut - $1,600,000
  • New York - $1,200,000
  • New Jersey - $800,000
  • Pennsylvania - $2,200,000
  • Delaware - $200,000
  • Maryland - $800,000
  • Virginia - $3,500,000
  • North Carolina - $2,400,000
  • South Carolina - $4,000,000
  • Georgia - $300,000

Sec. 2. 

Securing a loan for such debt shall fall to the President of the United States or an individual appointed by the President. The terms of the loan shall be fair for all parties.

Sec. 3.

This act will go into effect after it's constitutional passage.

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Speaker Frederick Muhlenberg (I-PA)

This bill is brought up for debate by the House for no less than 72 hours.

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Mr.Speaker,

I move to amend as follows 

Sec. 3.

This act will go into effect 25 years after it's constitutional passage Unless the states mentioned in section 2 have successfully paid off their debts.

I yield.

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Mr. Speaker,

I rise in support of this legislation. It is time for the federal government to ease the burden of the war on our states, and to promote national unity amongst our brethren all around this great nation.

I yield.

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Mr.Speaker,

This act is completely nonsensical if states can pay off their debts, which several can or are already close to doing so then why should we burden everybody with debts which states will be free from in 1-5 years. This isn't an act of unity Mr.Speaker it is an act of economic lunacy as we don't even have a plan to pay off the debts we want to take over which will inevitable lead to us not paying them off for generations and accruing more and more debt until we are crushed by a debt so large it will never ever be fully repaid. Many empires have crumbled from unpaid debts Mr.Speaker, and I for one would rather learn from history then let it repeat itself in our country which is why I implore members of Congress to vote down this act as written. Now if it were rewritten to state that the government would help states which were having trouble repaying its debts that would be acceptable as we are still recognizing the states rights and not overburdening ourselves with debt we can't pay off. 

I yield.

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Mr. Speaker, 

 It is important that the debt of nation be united in the nation through the federal government since all of us as states were UNITED in our fight against the tyranny of King George. Therefore the federal government should assume all debts of the states.

 

I yield

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 Mr. Speaker,

Reverend Green's assertion that the assumption of debts would be a problem is misinformed. Many people who are experts in the world of economics support this bill, such as the most trusted Alexander Hamilton and our beloved President Washington. In addition, Mr. Green has written in a paper that states like Virginia are close to paying off their debts, which is completely incorrect. Virginia happens to be the most in debt with a crushing $3,500,000 requirement. My own state of New York is the lowest debt of the large states and we happen to fully support this bill, as it is necessary for the states not to collapse, and as a Republican that is so worried about states rights, should he not be more concerned with that event?

I yield.

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Mr.Speaker,

First off my last name is McGee not green, and second how will the federal government pay off any debt when we have .2 million dollars which would pay off 4 of the smaller states debts and are ourselves running a deficit of roughly 2.37 million dollars? If we can't afford our own debts what makes us think we can afford the debts of other states? I yield.

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Mr. Speaker,

The national government recently passed an act implementing a collection of tariffs specifically for the purpose of increasing government revenue so that we can pay off debts incurred during the war.  As our new constitution does not allow for states to individually implement tariffs without Congressional approval, the duty to implement duties falls upon us.  Unless we intend to allow states to implement their own tariffs to pay state debt, which would effectively return us to the confederation, it seems reasonable to have the national government assume these debts.

I yield.

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Mr.Speaker,

Basing an entire economic philosophy on a trade killing bill such as the tariff act is foolish at best, and out of touch with economics and the world at worst. Mr.Speaker, by implementing the tariffs we are killing hundreds of trade deals and companies for the sake of one industry which is barely above water, but I've talked this chambers ears off enough about the tariff issue I think. The real travesty Mr.Speaker is that even if we do get enough money to pay down the federal debt incurred we will still have years upon years of debt needlessly taken on from the states instead of allowing them the chance to pay them off themselves and then coming to us to ask for help. And with that beginning a strand of imperialism and centralism that will rival that of the imperialistic dictators whom shackles we just threw off. 

I yield

Edited by Batman

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Mr. Speaker,

The congressman is arguing a bill that has already been passed. His wish to undo that bill won't happen soon, and so we are simply asking that the revenue be used to support the states to prevent them from collapse and utter ruin.

I yield.

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Mr.Speaker,

I don't wish to undo the bill but I am free to state that basing an entire bill on a failed idea of tariffs won't result in a positive result.

I yield.

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Mr. Speaker,

I respect the passion brought to this House by the member from Rhode Island, but I believe his fears are unfounded and unjustified.  I do not believe the gentleman from Rhode Island believes we should not pay off our debts, thus some form of revenue is needed to pay off our federal debt and the recently passed Tariff Act was meant to address that exact issue.  This Assumption Act will promote national unity by alleviating the debt burdens of the state and transferring it to the federal government.  Expecting that the states should be paying off their debt on their own is politically unwise because, as earlier stated, states can not implement the tariffs to generate the revenues needed to address their debt.  Thus the only option would be for those states to implement a host of new internal, domestic taxes.  We just fought a revolution against such practices and I don't see any benefits for the states to be burdened with implementing new taxes when we can simply use tariff revenues to address the issue broadly.

 

I yield.

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