Back in Hawaii and delivering his radio and Internet address today, President Barack Obama seemed pleased with Congress’ twelfth-hour negotiations in avoiding the fiscal cliff. And now the president gets to look forward to his next battle, raising the government’s borrowing limit.
Although Congress managed to keep America from going over the proverbial cliff, unpopular decisions regarding spending that were put off pretty much guarantee that the House and Senate will dig in and resume their respective stances when it comes time to vote on raising the country’s $16.4 trillion debt ceiling.
In addition to raising the debt ceiling, Congress will also need to look at the more than $100 billion in automatic spending cuts for the military and domestic programs that were put off during the recent fiscal cliff compromise.
Congress has about two months to hash out the debt ceiling and spending cuts.
Yesterday we reported that House speaker John Boehner has already dug in, and vowed not to take any more closed door meetings and one-on-ones with the president.
And during his weekly address shared by the White House, the president also sounds like he’s digging in. He said that there will be no negotiations regarding raising the government’s debt limit when he stated “one thing I will not compromise over is whether or not Congress should pay the tab for a bill they've already racked up."
“If Congress refuses to give the United States the ability to pay its bills on time, the consequences for the entire global economy could be catastrophic. The last time Congress threatened this course of action, our entire economy suffered for it. Our families and our businesses cannot afford that dangerous game again.”
The president also said that he’s open to considering spending cuts, and tax increases, in an effort to reduce the deficit.
In their address, Republicans countered with statements by Rep. Dave Camp of Michigan and shared by The Los Angeles Times. Camp stated that "we must identify responsible ways to tackle Washington's wasteful spending."
Camp went on to say that:
"… when you have no more money in your account and your credit cards are maxed out, then the spending must stop."
The rhetoric, the politics, and the posturing regarding dealing with raising the debt ceiling and dealing with spending cuts are no longer looming; they’re here.
For more on the debt ceiling, see the video accompanying this article.
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