So you think President Obama has the authority to invoke the 14th Amendment and raise the Debt Ceiling all by himself? Think again. According to the President himself, the debt ceiling is a statutory rule, not a constitution rule.
Speaking at an event in Maryland on Friday, the question of invoking the 14th amendment arose. President Obama responded by saying;
“There’s a provision in our Constitution that speaks to making sure that the United States meets its obligations, and there have been some suggestions that a president could use that language to basically ignore this debt ceiling rule, which is a statutory rule; it’s not a constitutional rule.
“I have talked to my lawyers … They’re not persuaded that that is a winning argument.”
Republicans have already suggested impeaching President Obama if he tries to use the 14th amendment to get the debt ceiling raised. Based on the President’s own words, it will seem this is a moot point.
The 14th amendment states that “the validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned.” Many have suggested this to mean that President Obama has all the authority he needs to raise the debt ceiling if Congress fails to do their job.
Republicans have shown a preference to allowing the United States to default on its debt if it means the rich will loose some of their tax loopholes. They have been fighting the president and Democrats, who have suggested that the only plausible way to move forward on raising the debt ceiling would be to raise revenue along with spending cuts.
The debt ceiling now stands at $14.3 trillion, and the United States will run out of the ability to continue paying it’s debt if the debt ceiling is not raised by August 2nd.