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Entries in Michael Bennet (3)

Monday
May162011

Chinese Official Lectured Senators to Get Fiscal House in Order

ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- Not only is the mounting U.S. debt causing anxiety at home, but one Democratic senator told ABC News that a group of senators faced an embarrassing reprimand by a Chinese official on a recent Congressional delegation to Asia.

"The most embarrassing moment to me on that trip was when a government official said to me, or said the to the delegation, 'You guys need to get your fiscal house in order,'" Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., said of an April trip to China with nine other senators.  "I felt like being at a shareholder meeting for a corporation and the shareholder is saying you're being irresponsible."

China now owns $1.2 trillion of the $14.3 trillion U.S. debt, according to the Treasury Department.

"Not only do they own a bunch of our debt, but they have a cash surplus which they're using to invest in infrastructure and in natural resources all over the globe," Bennet said.  "That's what we are increasingly incapable of doing unless we get this resolved."

Embarrassing or not, Bennet agrees with the Chinese on this issue: The United States needs to act now to get mounting deficits under control.

"If we can't come up with a deal this year, you know as well as I do that we're not going to come up with a deal next year," Bennet said, referencing the upcoming presidential race.  "If you ask me what are the chances that the capital markets, the guys that own the debt that we have sold them, come to the conclusion that we're not serious about the fiscal problem, I would say it would be a catastrophe."

Bennet, who was elected last November to a full term in the Senate after being appointed in 2009 to fill the seat Ken Salazar vacated when he was named secretary of the interior, said his hopes are with the bipartisan "Gang of Six" Senators who have been attempting to craft a deal to get the budget closer to balance.

But with little support from the White House or from either the Republican or Democratic Congressional leadership, the Gang of Six is considered by many in Washington to be all but dead.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Saturday
Oct162010

Sparks Fly Between Conservative Candidates in Colorado

Photo Courtesy - Buck for Colorado(DENVER) –- Two years after Barack Obama won Colorado in the 2008 election, leaving many to declare it a new blue state, Democrats are struggling to hold on to their seats as they face the same public ire that Republicans did two years ago.

Incumbent Sen. Michael Bennet, who replaced Ken Salazar last year, is in an uphill battle against Republican candidate and Tea Party favorite Ken Buck.

In a debate moderated by ABC News' Jake Tapper and KMGH anchor Mike Landess, Bennet struggled to distance himself from the Obama administration, painting himself as a moderate as Buck accused him of running away from his record.

"I have been more likely to vote with the other party than any other member of the congressional delegation, whether they're Democratic or whether they're Republican," said Bennet. "And on some critical issues for Colorado, I fought the administration."

Buck, on the other hand, fought back against the argument that he's reversed his position, including on health care.

"I haven’t reversed positions, but I have talked about issues in different ways," Buck said. "Sometimes it's a matter of learning more about issues. Sometimes it's a matter of using different language to try to explain the same situation."

Bennett and Buck are locked in a tight race that will come down to who can win over more independent voters who comprise a large chunk of the state's electorate.

Democrats are having a hard time edging up in polls not only in the Senate race but also in several House races. But where they do see a ray of hope is in the gubernatorial race, where Denver Mayor Hickenlooper leads by double digits.

In a race fraught with fighting among conservatives, pollsters say Hickenlooper is looking at an easy victory to replace exiting Gov. Bill Ritter, who decided not to seek reelection.

At Friday's fiery debate between Democrat John Hickenlooper, Republican Dan Maes and the American Constitution Party's Tom Tancredo, fireworks sparked between Maes and Tancredo as the Republican candidate accused the former member of Congress of sneaking onto the ballot "like an illegal immigrant."

Businessman Maes rode to victory on the back of the Tea Party's support, narrowly defeating another GOP establishment favorite, former Rep. Scott McInnis.

Tancredo quit the GOP and declared himself a candidate of the American Constitution Party despite calls from Maes and other Republicans who feared it would split the vote. The former congressman's move did divide the Republican Party, essentially paving an easy path for Hickenlooper.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio

Friday
Oct152010

Colorado Senate Candidate Struggles for Votes

Photo Courtesy - United States Senate/Michael Bennet(DENVER) -- Democrats in Colorado are struggling to hold onto their seats as they face the same public ire that Republicans did two years ago when President Obama won the state in the 2008 election.  Incumbent Sen. Michael Bennet, who replaced Ken Salazar last year, is facing an uphill battle against Republican candidate and Tea Party favorite Ken Buck.

With the two locked in a tight race, it will come down to how they perform in the debates Friday and whether they can win over independent voters who comprise a large chunk of the state's electorate.

ABC News' Jake Tapper and KMGH anchor Mike Landess will moderate Friday's debate between Bennet and Buck, as well as a debate between gubernatorial candidates Democrat John Hickenlooper, Republican Dan Maes and the American Constitution Party's Tom Tancredo.

Buck has attacked Bennet as a Washington insider closely aligned with Obama's agenda, even though the incumbent has attempted to portray himself as an independent and more of a moderate.

Bennet, in turn, has criticized his opponent for calling Social Security a "horrible policy," a comment that Buck later retracted, and his comments that the Department of Education isn't necessary.

Copyright 2010 ABC News Radio







ABC News Radio