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Sen. John Kerry Says Compromise Needed In Debt Showdown

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Sen. John Kerry (Photo by Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images)

Sen. John Kerry (Photo by Brendan Smialowski/Getty Images)

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BOSTON (CBS/AP) — Sen. John Kerry is blaming “a few ideological extremists” in the Republican Party for jeopardizing the nation’s economy by refusing to negotiate a deal to raise the nation’s debt limit ahead of an Aug. 2 deadline.

Kerry told reporters Friday that Democrats are ready to make concessions on safety net programs but some Republicans have refused to budge from their demand that no taxes, even on the nation’s wealthiest, be part of that deal.

WBZ NewsRadio 1030’s Lana Jones reports

The Massachusetts Democrat said extra revenues are critical to any deal. Otherwise, he said, the cost of raising the debt ceiling will fall entirely “on the backs of working Americans.”

Kerry also said that cuts need to be made.

“We need to reform Medicare,” he said.  “And we need to deal with Medicaid over-expense.  We’ve got to do it all, folks.”

Republican Sen. Scott Brown has said he hopes Democratic and Republican leaders can work out a deal that makes needed cuts and prevents the country from defaulting on its bills.

(TM and © Copyright 2011 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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