Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is hoping for Republican votes to raise the debt ceiling Photo: AFP/File
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U.S. Congress averts default with stop-gap debt limit hike

16 Comments
By Frankie TAGGART

U.S. lawmakers rubber-stamped a short-term bill to lift the nation's borrowing authority Tuesday, averting the threat of a first-ever debt default -- but only for a few weeks.

The Democratic-controlled House of Representatives voted along party lines to pass the stop-gap $480 billion hike, which advanced from the Senate last Thursday after weeks of heated debate.

"It's about the kitchen table, it's about our economy, the global economy, but it's also about our constitution which says the full faith and credit of the United States shall not be in doubt," Democratic House Speaker Nancy Pelosi told reporters ahead of the vote.

Democratic leaders had spent weeks underlining the havoc that a default would have wrought, including the loss of six million jobs and $15 trillion in household wealth as well as increased costs for mortgages and other borrowing.

Republicans refused to offer any of their own votes to avert the crisis, and even blocked Democrats who control Congress from lifting the limit on their own, via a simple majority.

But the party dropped its blockade in the Senate last week, ending for now an impasse that risked leaving the federal government incapable of securing and servicing loans after Oct 18.

The new arrangement merely kicks the can down the road, possibly to complicate another major funding deadline -- a shutdown that would begin from Dec 3 when the government's coffers theoretically run out.

The borrowing cap may yet turn out to be less pressing, however.

Economists estimate that the nation will reach the new, revised debt limit sometime in mid-December or early January -- slightly later than the Dec 3 date that Congress originally projected.

The United States spends more money than it collects through taxation so it borrows money via the issuing of government bonds, seen as among the world's most reliable investments.

Around 80 years ago lawmakers introduced a limit on how much federal debt could be accrued.

The ceiling has been lifted dozens of times to allow the government to meet its spending commitments -- usually without drama and with the support of both parties -- and stands at around $28 trillion.

But Republicans in both chambers of Congress have this time objected, saying they refuse to support Biden's "reckless" taxing and spending plans.

In reality, raising the debt ceiling doesn't authorize new spending -- it merely pays for expenses that both Republican and Democratic administrations have already committed to.

"This is about meeting obligations that the government has already incurred, including from the bipartisan Covid relief or legislation passed last year," Pelosi said. "Only three percent of the current debt that we're addressing here has been incurred during the Biden years."

The absurdity of regularly risking a recession -- not to mention America's credit rating and the stability other major economies -- over partisan squabbling has not been lost on Congress.

Pelosi was asked Tuesday about a growing clamor to take the decision on raising the debt ceiling away from the party politics on Capitol Hill and give it to the Treasury.

"That seems to have some appeal to both sides of the aisle because of the consequences for people of not lifting it," she said. "Many, many Democrats and Republicans have voted against lifting the debt ceiling -- but never (before) to the extent of jeopardizing it."

© 2021 AFP

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

16 Comments

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In 2006, every Democrat voted against raising the debt limit. 

In 2004, all but two Democrats voted against raising the debt limit.

In 2003, all but three Senate Democrats voted against raising the debt limit.

Including then Senator Biden and Senator Chuck Schumer against raising the limit each time. Biden missed the vote in 2004 but claimed had he voted it would have been NO.

-1 ( +7 / -8 )

But Republicans in both chambers of Congress have this time objected, saying they refuse to support Biden's "reckless" taxing and spending plans.

In reality, raising the debt ceiling doesn't authorize new spending -- it merely pays for expenses that both Republican and Democratic administrations have already committed to.

BINGO!

The Repubs added $8 trillion to the debt over the past four years - to include a $1.9 trillion tax break for the Top 1% richest Americans - all unfunded....

Now they don't want tp pay their bills....

Remind you of a former reality TV star with a reputation as a deadbeat?

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Remind you of a former reality TV star with a reputation as a deadbeat?

No it really doesn’t remind me of any such thing.

Does Remind me that Biden and Schumer voted against raising the debt ceiling when it was time to pay their own bills though.

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Remind you of a former reality TV star with a reputation as a deadbeat?

No it really doesn’t remind me of any such thing.

You're probably the only one....

https://www.theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2011/04/in-financial-circles-its-pretty-well-known-that-trump-is-a-deadbeat/237584/

Does Remind me that Biden and Schumer voted against raising the debt ceiling when it was time to pay their own bills though.

Newsflash: 2006 was 15 years ago....so explain to us why the Repubs don't want tp pay for their 2018 $1.9 trillion UNFUNDED tax break for millionaires and billionaires, and the other $6 trillion they irresponsibly racked up in four years?

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Stop gap debt limit hike !

Stop gap, stop gap, for how long more?

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As long as the national debt rises in parity with the GNP, there is no problem. Think about it: if you have a $100,00 mortgage and an income of $30,00, it's quite different from having the same mortgage and an income of $200,00. Plus the ability to mint money at will. Seems like the only time Repubs think this way is when a Repub is president.

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You're probably the only one....

I doubt that. Could you point me to the specific part of this article that "reminded" you of reality TV, only one specific host and his individual bills? I didnt get that from anything I read.

2006 was 15 years ago

Why yes it was. When was this reality show I imagine you are referencing first aired? 17 years ago, wasnt it?

To save time and multiple posts, did anything in this article also remind you of (Jan 6/Chinese neckties/ex Presidents saying to take the safe and effective vaccine, John Bolton/Ann Coulter or anything related to impeachment or Russia)?

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The United States spends more money than it collects through taxation so it borrows money via the issuing of government bonds, seen as among the world's most reliable investments.

Well China is the top buyer of these bonds, In other words China offers loans to the US so that the US can buy goods produced by China..this is reason why China is able to flex its muscle globally.

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Oh I was just "reminded" of President Obama and the national debt he incurred when I re-read this article.

9.3 trillion dollars, wow thats a lot.

Seems Repubs must have voted to increase the debt ceiling all those years, no?

When Obama was sworn in on Jan. 20, 2009, the debt was $10.626 trillion.1 When he left office on Jan. 20, 2017, it was $19.937 trillion. It explains why some would say Obama added $9 trillion to the debt.

2 ( +6 / -4 )

The Repubs added $8 trillion to the debt over the past four years - to include a $1.9 trillion tax break for the Top 1% richest Americans - all unfunded....

Now they don't want tp pay their bills....

Remind you of a former reality TV star with a reputation as a deadbeat?

Interesting, but the reality is that liberals in this administration with their socialist goodies list will outspend anything the Republicans can muster. We are spending more than we are taking in.

The Biden disastrous $3.5 trillion list of goodies.

Free community college for all illegal immigrants

$79 billion for IRS tax enforcement

$12 billion for government electric cars

$3 billion for tree equity

$25 million for bias training

$4 billion for distance-learning

2022 can’t come fast enough to start getting Brandon and Nancy out.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

You're probably the only one....

I doubt that.

I don't....you wouldn't either if you read the article in the link I posted...

Could you point me to the specific part of this article that "reminded" you of reality TV, only one specific host and his individual bills? I didnt get that from anything I read.

Absolutely, "In reality, raising the debt ceiling doesn't authorize new spending -- it merely pays for expenses that both Republican and Democratic administrations have already committed to."

I guess you forgot who headed the Republican administration from 2017-2021...I don't blame you, we'd all like to forget it...

2006 was 15 years ago

Why yes it was. When was this reality show I imagine you are referencing first aired? 17 years ago, wasnt it?

See above - who was President the last four years....try hard to remember now....hint: he's obese, profane, lies constantly, and likes porn stars...

To save time and multiple posts, did anything in this article also remind you of (Jan 6/Chinese neckties/ex Presidents saying to take the safe and effective vaccine, John Bolton/Ann Coulter or anything related to impeachment or Russia)?

No, but thanks for bringing them up...you still wearing your Chinese-made Trump Collection necktie?

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

Interesting, but the reality is that liberals in this administration with their socialist goodies list will outspend anything the Republicans can muster. We are spending more than we are taking in.

Interesting, but this has nothing to do with the current debt limit and the Repubs refusal to pay THEIR bills....

Why won't they vote to pay for their 2018 $1.9 trillion tax giveaway to the rich?

The Biden disastrous $3.5 trillion list of goodies.

Says you. I assume you neglected to post a link since it would only lead back to some kooky far-right site that sells pillows....

-3 ( +2 / -5 )

I knew they could avert diaster

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bass4funk

Interesting, but the reality is that liberals in this administration with their socialist goodies list will outspend anything the Republicans can muster. We are spending more than we are taking in.

The Biden disastrous $3.5 trillion list of goodies.

Free community college for all illegal immigrants

$79 billion for IRS tax enforcement

$12 billion for government electric cars

$3 billion for tree equity

$25 million for bias training

$4 billion for distance-learning

All that sounds fine to me. But the Infrastructure Bill isn't what we are talking about here. The debt ceiling is paying the bills that Trump racked up.

1 ( +7 / -6 )

Oh I was just "reminded" of President Obama and the national debt he incurred when I re-read this article.

9.3 trillion dollars, wow thats a lot.

Yes. But half of what Trump incurred, in dollars per year.

-5 ( +2 / -7 )

yet Dems wouldnt vote for paying the bills previous administrations racked up in 2003, 2004 and 2006.

so kind of hypocritical for them to claim Repubs have to do the opposite of what Biden himself did when he was in the same situation. Again, Biden voted against raising the debt ceiling twice and didnt bother to vote the other time, 3 in total.

its why liberals created "whataboutism". They are really bad answering about why the exact same thing was ok when they did it, but not ok at all when someone else does.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

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