Here we go, folks. Republicans in the House are holding the country hostage again over the debt ceiling. During a presser today the President had to explain to the very ill informed journalists present how our Constitution works–bold emphasis mine.
[C]ongress authorizes spending. They order me to spend. They tell me you need to fund our defense department at such an such a level. You need to send out social security checks. You need to make sure that you’re paying to care for our veterans. They lay all this out for me, because they have the spending power. And so I am required by law to go ahead and pay these bills.
So if you’re mad at the President because you’ve been listening to the Mainstream Media and they’re telling you the President is asking for unlimited spending, read that several times carefully. The President doesn’t spend anything. Congress does and did. The President only issues the check. It’s part of our checks and balances. Now, if the President MUST write the checks by law, if he does not it is an impeachable offense. But he can’t write the checks to pay for the money ALREADY SPENT by Congress if they don’t raise the debt ceiling and the President isn’t normally allowed to raise the debt ceiling.
The President has rejected a variety of ways to get around this restriction–the trillion dollar coin thing, using the 14th Amendment, etc. because politically either solution is dangerous and he probably believes (as do I) that Republicans would use anything he does to raise the Debt Ceiling on his own would be an excuse to impeach him. And from a principled point of view, it’s not the President’s job to raise the debt ceiling. It’s Congress’ job and they’re refusing. This is part of their political agenda to thwart the President. It has nothing to do with the health of the economy. To them, it’s all about politics.
What could happen if Congress doesn’t do their job and raise the Debt Ceiling? We would become a deadbeat nation, our giant economy will stumble. What happens when a giant stumbles? Little people, like you and me, get crushed. It’s not about politics for the little people like us. For us it’s about whether our troops get paid so the spouse back in the U.S. doesn’t get evicted or your grandmother gets her social security check that she uses to buy cat food or your mentally ill uncle receives his disability check to pay the heat during one of the coldest winters on record.