debt ceiling

  • The Debt Ceiling Law is now a Tool of Partisan Political Power; Abolish It

    by Mark Weisbrot

    There is no "ticking bomb" of national debt; the use of the debt ceiling to threaten the nation with default to secure spending cuts that damage Democratic presidents is by now a clearly established partisan trick, and the US government should no longer be held hostage to it, says an economic policy researcher. 

  • Does Lincoln Hold the Key to the Debt Ceiling Crisis?

    by Roger Lowenstein

    Issuing "greenback" paper currency backed by the government's credit instead of gold was seen as a radical move in 1862, but Lincoln and Treasury Secretary Salmon Chase recognized the paramount importance of safeguarding the nation's credit and did it anyway. 

  • What's the Deal with the Trillion Dollar Coin?

    Law professor Rohan Grey discusses the history of the debt ceiling law and why minting a giant denomination coin might be the least stupid option should Congress refuse to raise the ceiling. 

  • The 14th Amendment Should Put a Stop to Debt Ceiling Hostage Taking

    by Eric Foner

    The provisions of the Reconstruction Amendments dealing with the national debt were tied to the nation's short-lived commitment to interracial democracy in the South; today they offer the Biden administration a possible tool to use if Congress pushes to the brink of default. 

  • The Constitutional Case for Demolishing the Debt Ceiling

    by Thomas Geoghegan

    The Founders would find the debt ceiling a ludicrous concept; it's time to take this instrument of blackmail out of the legislative process. The Biden administration should provoke a court fight over the law as an unconstitutional limit on the government's ability to pay its debts. 

  • The US is Politically Bankrupt

    by Rebecca L. Spang

    By provoking crisis over the debt ceiling, Republicans are failing to heed lessons from pre-revolutionary France. 

  • The Disturbing Precedent for McConnell’s Debt-Ceiling Brinksmanship

    by Lindsay M. Chervinsky

    Mitch McConnell's use of Senate rules and the body's disproportionate representation to ensure that Democrats who represent 41.5 million more people than Republicans are unable to govern. His tactics echo those of the antebellum Slavocracy. 

  • Garrett Epps: The Civil War Roots of the Debt Ceiling Crisis

    Congress wrote the 14th Amendment to guarantee the legitimacy of the United States' debt, because Southerners restored to power provoked a crisis over the respective war debts of the United States and the Confederacy.