Politics Janet Yellen to Take 'Extraordinary Measures' to Prevent U.S. From Debt Default
Lindsey Graham Suggests Senators Leave D.C. to Prevent Infrastructure Bill via Reconciliation
The Republican senator said "we may learn something from our Democratic friends in Texas."Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, a New York Democrat, and President Joe Biden unveiled the $3.5 trillion spending proposal last week. The massive bill would work to fund childcare, provide money for education priorities, and expand health care access to millions of Americans. But Republicans have vocally opposed the plan, raising concerns about inflation and saying the bill will make Americans dependent on the government.
Treasury Secretarysaid she will take "extraordinary measures" to prevent the U.S. from a default on the national debt unless acts to suspend or increase the debt limit, she warned Congressional leaders in a letter Friday.
Yellen said the U.S.' "outstanding debt" will be at its statutory limit on August 1 and additional measures will be taken if the debt limit is not suspended or increased by August 2. The Treasury announced a suspension of the sale of state and local government securities, that increases the federal government's debt level, according to the Associated Press, and will take effect on July 30. For two years, the debt limit has been suspended.
Republicans hammer HUD chief over sluggish rental aid
Housing and Urban Development Secretary Marcia Fudge took heat Tuesday from Republicans over the meager portion of rental aid distributed to tenants and landlords with less than two weeks until a federal eviction ban expires.Fudge appeared before the House Financial Services Committee for what was scheduled to be testimony on the Biden administration's plans to expand affordable housing. But Democrats and Republicans spent most of the hearing sparring over Fudge's role in the dismal pace of rental aid distribution and why Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen had not joined her before the committee.
If Congress does not agree to suspend or heighten the debt limit on August 2, the "Treasury will need to start taking certain additional extraordinary measures in order to prevent the United States from defaulting on its obligations," Yellen said.
"Increasing or suspending the debt limit does not increase government spending, nor does it authorize spending for future budget proposals; it simply allows Treasury to pay for previously enacted expenditures," she added.
Yellen noted the U.S.' current debt level is a result of spending and tax decisions made "by Administrations and Congresses of both parties over time."
Video: Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen says inflation may be temporary (FOX News)
Senate braces for a nasty debt ceiling fight
Republicans are digging in on the federal debt limit, warning Democrats that it will be up to them to avoid a default as President Biden pushes for trillions more in spending.GOP senators are taking a firm line as Democrats plot a path for their $3.5 trillion spending measure, which the party plans to pass with budget reconciliation rules that will prevent the GOP from blocking it with a filibuster.Given those plans, GOP senators say they won't lift a finger to help Democrats raise the debt ceiling."I'm not sure why there's much of an incentive right now given what the Democrats are doing, trying to run roughshod over the minority in the Senate, to help them," said Sen.
For more reporting from the Associated Press, see below.
Yellen said that her actions would buy time until Congress can pass legislation to either raise the debt limit or suspend the limit again for a period of time.
The debt limit will go back into effect on July 31.
The sale of state and local government securities is used by some local jurisdictions to meet some of their financing needs.
Senate Republican Leadersaid earlier this week that he believes all will vote against raising or suspending the debt limit, which prompted Majority Leader to call the comments "shameless, cynical and totally political."
The United States debt limit suspension ends Saturday .
The Treasury should have enough cash to pay the country's obligations into the fall, experts estimate.The debt ceiling is the amount the Treasury can borrow on behalf of the public. Raising or suspending that borrowing limit does not dictate how much money the government spends, but allows the U.S. to pay what has already been approved. The debt ceiling was suspended in 2019 under President Donald Trump.