(CNSNews.com) - Conservative Republican Rep. Bob Good of Virginia says the threat of a government shutdown should be used as "leverage" to force "fiscal responsibility."
But another Republican, Rep. Carlos Gimenez of Florida, is more cautious:
"I think it should be considered as something of last resort. I don't think it should be something that's out there, it's one of the first things that we're going to do," Giminez told Fox News's Neil Cavuto on Monday.
"That's why I believe that there should be, along with any -- any passage of any of the appropriations bills that come out of the House, there should be a continuing resolution to keep the government working.
"And that continuing resolution, by the way, is -- it goes back to the previous year's budget. So that, in effect, is a cut. But a lot of people depend on a lot of government services. And so, while I say never--"
Cavuto interrupted him, asking if a debt ceiling showdown leading to a government shutdown "is routinely discussed among your colleagues" – in other words, if Republicans don't get their way on spending, they will refuse to raise the debt limit, something that could force a government shutdown.
"What I think is that, look, all options should be on the table, but that should not be your -- the thing that you resort to first, that we're going to shut the government down. That's the last thing we need to do," Gimenez said:
"Yes, we need to bring our debt down, without a doubt. One of the reasons I ran was for my children and my grandchildren.
"We put them in a tremendous amount of debt. We're robbing their future with the debt that we have accumulated. And we do need to bring our government under control, our budget under control and our debt. We need to reduce our debt.
"But there are things that we have to do as a government. And that should be the baseline. What are the things we actually have to do as a government? Those things we don't have to do, maybe we should be out of that business."
Gimenez said the problem with freezing spending at 2022 levels is the cap it that would place on defense spending:
"While we are facing probably the greatest challenge of any adversary, which is China, and they're continuing to ramp up their military, we can't afford to start -- start ramping down our military.
"And while I agree with Representative Good about wasteful spending in the military, and we need to crack down on that, our state of readiness needs to be elevated, not degraded by some kind of an artificial cap on what we can spend.
"Our security is everything. And so that needs to be the driving force, what exactly it is that we need to spend in order to keep America safe.”
Gimenez agreed that the U.S. military is not exempt from wasteful spending:
"I mean, look, it can be proven that it's wasteful military spending, absolutely. But we have to get America ready to face our greatest adversary, which is China, and that is not going to come cheaply. So, again, my statement is, we need to spend what we need to spend in order to keep America safe.
"If there is wasteful spending in the military, absolutely cut it. I will be the first one that -- first one there voting to cut wasteful military spending, but we need to spend what we need to spend," he said.
Conservative Republican: 'The Real Test for Us...Will Be...Debt Ceiling'