By Brad Segall
NORRISTOWN, Pa. (CBS) — Pennsylvania’s two U.S. senators voted in favor of the deal to avoid the “fiscal cliff,” although one did so reluctantly.
Republican Senator Pat Toomey says his preference would have been to avoid higher taxes for all Americans, but when it appeared that wasn’t going to happen, he says his priority was protecting 99% of the taxpayers. Toomey was adamant about significant spending cuts which he says are needed to reduce the deficit.
“The fact that (President Obama) got the tax increase he wanted thanks to the laws on the books and that will solve six percent of our deficit problems,” Toomey says, “that’s completely unsustainable.”
Toomey says he will continue to work to bring down spending and chip away at the deficit.
He also says it’s time for the parties to work together and end the back door, late night, last minute deals.
“It’s an absolutely terrible process that got us to this point,” Toomey says, “a completely dysfunctional Senate where Senator (Harry) Reid chooses not to pass budgets, despite the statutory obligation to do so.”
Meanwhile, Democrat Bob Casey called the deal far from perfect, but says the Senate took appropriate steps to protect the middle class and provide a continued lifeline for those on unemployment.