Debt-limit deadline moved to Nov. 3, GOP still has no plan in sight


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House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. November, 2014.

Hey, don’t look at us.

As the House GOP continues to chase its tail looking for a leader, Treasury Secretary Jack Lew told Congress the debt-limit deadline has moved up to Nov. 3. By then, the government will need to have raised the $18.1 trillion cap because it will have just $30 billion of cash on hand and “federal bills for a single day sometimes eclipse $60 billion.” Yikes! And if the GOP-led Congress fails to raise the ceiling, absolutely nothing good will come of it. Peter Schroeder reports:

Without a hike, the specter of a default on U.S. obligations looms large — potentially setting the stage for significant market turmoil and dire consequences for America’s financial reputation across the globe.
“The first thing you’ll see is a market reaction,” said Doug Holtz-Eakin, head of the right-leaning American Action Forum and a former director of the Congressional

Office. “Then you’ve got dramatic impacts on consumer confidence, the world’s melting down again and they go into an economic fetal position … there’s just no good news there.”

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) is engaged in budget talks with the White House, but there is little optimism a deal could be struck in time to act on the debt limit.

And don’t look to John Boehner to solve this crisis. Even if he had the guts to try …

Boehner could face a move from conservatives to remove him as Speaker immediately if he brings a clean bill to raise the debt ceiling to the floor.

The debt ceiling has not yet become a major talking point for GOP presidential candidates. But heaven help us if it does because they are sure to tag Capitol lawmakers as a bunch of sellouts for even contemplating giving the federal government the ability to pay its bills. The next debate is Oct. 28, about a week before the deadline.

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