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Senator compares Toomey amendment to "Hunger Games"

Published by Tracie Mauriello on .

Katniss Everdeen was nowhere in sight, that didn’t stop U.S. Sen. Max Baucus, D-Mont., from envisioning “The Hunger Games” on the Senate floor this afternoon.

He used imagery from the popular book-turned-movie in order to blast an amendment by Republican Senate colleague Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania.

The amendment, which was brought to the floor and then immediately tabled on a 53-45 vote, would have ensure payments to active military, Social Security recipients and national debt holders even if Congress hasn’t raised the debt ceiling. 

Mr. Toomey introduced the amendment into a bill already approved by the House that suspends the debt ceiling through May 18 and prevents lawmakers from collecting paychecks unless they have passed a budget.

“My amendment is about minimizing the risk of disruption in the event that the debt ceiling is not raised by the moment it expires,” Mr. Toomey said during brief floor debate this afternoon. It would authorize the treasury secretary to raise the debt ceiling if necessary to cover interest on the national debt, Social Security checks and pay for active duty military, he said.

Mr. Baucus compared the idea to “The Hunger Games,” in which children were forced to fight to the death until only one survived.

"Under this amendment there are three categories that would be protected,” Mr. Baucus said. “Everybody else is out for him or herself. … It would be total chaos.”

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