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Saturday, October 22, 2016

LIBERTY, United States (AFP) – President Barack Obama warned Friday that America would become a “deadbeat” nation if conservative Republicans refuse to raise the government’s debt ceiling by next month and throw the economy into crisis.

Obama traveled to a car plant in Missouri to slam Republicans who are threatening to make an increase in the $16.7 trillion borrowing limit contingent on ending funding for his cherished health care reform law.

“If we don’t raise the debt ceiling — we are deadbeats,” Obama warned in a fiery speech, saying Republican tactics on the House of Representatives were “the height of irresponsibility.”

“This is the United States of America. We are not a banana republic, this is not a deadbeat nation. We don’t run out on our tab.”

The president took pains to explain that raising the debt ceiling — providing the government the money to pay its obligations — was not the same as adding to the annual budget deficit and did not include new spending.

He accused Republicans in Congress of risking a “tailspin” for the still recovering U.S. economy, and for putting partisan zeal ahead of the good of the whole nation.

“If Congress doesn’t pass this debt ceiling in the next few weeks, the United States will default on its obligations. That’s never happened in American history. Basically, America becomes a deadbeat,” Obama said.

His remarks escalated a political row between the White House, Democrats and some Republicans in Congress, who see the conservative debt ceiling strategy as flirting with fiscal disaster.

The U.S. government is expected to run out of money by around the middle of next month — a scenario that could send stockmarkets tumbling and send shockwaves through the global economy.

Obama also slammed Republicans over their strategy on another issue — the government budget for the coming fiscal year.

Earlier on Friday, the Republican-run House of Representatives approved a stop gap budget — which would also defund the health care law.

The measure has no chance of surviving a Democratic-led Senate and Obama’s presidential veto, but will at best delay the process of reaching a budget deal.

If no solution to this row is found by October 1, huge parts of the U.S. government will be forced to close down, and Obama warned even soldiers serving abroad could see their paychecks stopped.

Photo Credit: AFP/Brendan Smialowski

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  • tdm3624

    I understand that the bankers don’t want us to default b/c they make millions off of interest. But if the U.S. defaults on its debt how would that affect middle class America?

    • Independent1

      Here’s a summary of what would happen on a debt default a while back from Tim Geithner when he was head of the Treasury:

      Interest rates would rise, since “Treasuries represent the benchmark borrowing rate” for all other bonds. This means increased costs for corporations, state and local governments, mortgages and consumer loans.

      The dollar would drop, as foreign investors fled the “safe-haven status” of Treasuries. The dollar would lose its status as a global world currency.

      The U.S. government would not be able to pay salaries or benefits for federal or military personnel and retirees. Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid benefit payments would stop, as would student loan payments, tax refunds and payments to keep government facilities open.

      • Lovefacts

        And this is just a partial list of what would happen. In the end, we would a depression worse than the 1930s, and as our economy tanked so too would the rest of the world. China depends upon the US consumer to keep its massive population working. But if we were in a depression, we would only be paying for essentials–food, shelter, and a few clothes. As China’s economy tanked, they would experience massive unrest and the collapse of their burgeoning middle class, which in turn would escalate the anger among young men at imbalance between males and females–1 woman for every 5 men.

        It sure would help if Republicans and all Americans knew history. If they did, they would realize that countries have historically gone to war when they have too many males to get rid of the excess male population. And who would be in their cross-hairs, the US.

        • tdm3624

          China provokes the U.S. by taking over Taiwan. North Korea joins in. Japan, South Korea, and U.S. wage war against China and North Korea. U.S. entices Russia to join in with promises of Chinese land.

      • latebloomingrandma

        Can Congress then be jailed for treason?

        • Independent1

          If it were up to me – YES!! I don’t think it would be hard for the Justice Department to build a case for treason against Boehner and McConnell for them allowing their leadership positions to be used in totally obstructing the economic advancement of the nation; and against Darrell Issa for his obvious treasonous actions in bringing false accusations against the White House, the IRS and other agencies.

      • tdm3624

        Thank you so much. So if I’m understanding correctly, the Tea Party/Libertarian’s idea of defaulting doesn’t take into account the extent of corporate borrowing (and how it would hurt businesses) and doesn’t seem to realize the negative impact defaulting could have on the states, most of whom use federal dollars all the time. They want a quick simple solution and let the pieces fall where they may. Correct?

        • Independent1

          I’m not sure that Tea Party and Libertarian people are even thinking about the default – I don’t think they really care what achieving their objective means with respect to destroying the country. ALL these people care about is that THEY GET THEIR WAY!!! In their minds, I think, what happens to the country in the process of them getting THEIR WAY, is just to bad for the country and the country will have to try and live with it. I’ve never before in my life seen such self-centered, egotistical, biggots!!!

  • itsfun

    Didn’t the house pass a bill that pays our bills until December? That give enough time for Obama and the House and Senate to work out a deal. Our president need to quit saying no compromise on everything he wants and come to the table and hash out a deal acceptable to both sides.

    • highpckts

      Obama worked out a ” deal” the last time this went down! The GOP doesn’t want compromise, they want the whole show! They will continue to do this every few months until 2016 when they think they will have a Republican in the Presidency! The GOP are allowing the extreme right wing to call the shots and the whole party has lost it’s moral and ethical compass!!

      • Allan Richardson

        You cannot negotiate with someone to whom a fate comparable to death is their MINIMUM demand. Imagine buying a house from someone who demands, before accepting ANY money, that you must kill your own child (assuming, for the sake of this example, that this were legal). You could not buy that house at all, if you care about your child’s life!

  • Allan Richardson

    The 14th Amendment trumps any artificial “debt ceiling” set by Congress. After the Congress has appropriated money for a project, and the orders have been placed, the checks MUST be written. The President should act on that authority without waiting for Congressional games. He does not have the authority to add items to the budget, but he does have the authority to disburse what has ALREADY been budgeted, even if it adds temporarily to the debt and raises it above the “ceiling” which was passed as a cosmetic measure (and that is ALL it is).

    • nirodha

      If the debt ceiling interferes with the with the ability of the federal government to pay the debt service on its bonds, or to pay other legally-required obligations (including payments to pensioners, i.e.; Social Security), it is in violation of Section 4 of the 14th Amendment, and therefor unconstitutional. President Obama has no choice but to continue to authorize such payments, despite the increasingly batshit crazy tactics of the increasingly unhinged TPotty republican minority inhabiting the House. It’s absolutely astounding that a group of 80 or 90 extreme right-wing wackos are holding the balance of the 435 members of the House hostage on this futile attempt to undo the ACA!

    • latebloomingrandma

      I agree. The President should just invoke the 14th amendment, and doing such, would dare the SCOTUS to overturn, at their own peril. I have never seen a House of Representatives such as the last 2 that Boehner is in charge of, that is either so stupid or so unpatriotic that they would harm the country in such a way, as to ensure their own re-election, or damage this President that they hate so much.

    • ObozoMustGo

      Exactly WHICH budget has Obozo signed that has given him authority to spend?

  • ObozoMustGo

    Only one thing needs to be said……..

    Sen. Barack Obama’s Floor Speech, March 20, 2006 — “The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the U.S. Government can’t pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies. … Increasing America’s debt weakens us domestically and internationally. Leadership means that “the buck stops here.” Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better.”