Pelosi: GOP Connecting Debt Limit to Reducing Deficit ‘Appalling’

By Nicholas Ballasy | July 29, 2011 | 12:46 PM EDT

( – House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) said that House Republicans should not be connecting an increase to the debt limit to reducing the nation’s current $1.5 trillion deficit.

“Over 30 times we have lifted the debt ceiling since President Reagan was president. Over 30 times, not one time did we subject a president to this burden of saying you can’t – we won’t lift it unless we reduce the deficit,” said Pelosi on Wednesday at a Capitol Hill press conference celebrating the 46th anniversary of Medicare being signed into law.

“Of course we will reduce the deficit but it should not be connected and the idea that we could jeopardize whether they’re sending out social security checks or military checks or that our credit rating would be affected by this is appalling but I commend Senator Reid for trying to find a path. I commend the president for his patience, for his respect, for every view on democratic or republican view, giving it time, consideration, trying to make it work. I wish the same respect for his time was and the responsibility that we all have was there.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi of Calif., speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Nov. 17, 2010, after being re-elected as the leader of the House Democrats. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Pelosi argued that by solely making cuts to federal spending, the government would have to cut entitlement benefits.

“If you just make cuts, you pretty soon will be cutting benefits. There’s just no way that you can cut $3 trillion in domestic spending especially when they don’t want to have a firewall between domestic and defense,” said Pelosi.