I had to laugh when I heard this news report from Senator Heidi Heitkamp who says she’ll vote to raise the debt ceiling because if we don’t we might add to the deficit.[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sxsAy4R_jqo&w=640&h=360]
Senator Heitkamp must have gone to the Kent Conrad school of decreasing the deficit by spending more.
As for Heitkamp’s comments about damaging the “full faith and credit” of the US government by not raising the debt ceiling, that’s a bit of a bait and switch. Refusing to raise the debt ceiling doesn’t mean we’ll default on existing debt. Serving the national debt in the last fiscal year cost about $360 billion, or about $30 billion/month. That’s all we have to pay to keep from defaulting on the debt.
Much more painful would be the trillion or so in spending cuts we’d have to carve out of the budget so that we don’t add any more debt. We could do that and not default on the debt, but it would be hard.
And one thing politicians like Heitkamp don’t really want to do is make tough spending decisions.