US national debt clock / billboard. Picture was taken on April 19, 2008 so add approximately $1.5 billion per day to get to the current amount.
Remember all those debt limit fights? Well, apparently Congress got tired of fighting. So now they’re working toward doing away with the debt limit altogether.
In recent years, conservatives fought to get at least some spending cuts, to begin putting the budget on a path to balance—after all, raising the debt ceiling means Congress has spent too much. Cutting spending before increasing the debt limit is necessary if Congress is to exercise some control over the debt.
But not this year. No one put up a fight this time—so Congress is essentially handing President Obama a blank check for the entire year.
“With almost $17.3 trillion in national debt, failing to put a debt limit in place to protect taxpayers from even more reckless spending by Congress is beyond irresponsible,” Heritage’s Romina Boccia, the Grover M. Hermann Fellow, told The Foundry.
That’s $140,000 per household, by the way.
Watch the Foundry explain in one minute what this “blank check” means:
“The fact that we are here today to debate raising America’s debt limit is a sign of leadership failure. It is a sign that the US Government cannot pay its own bills. It is a sign that we now depend on ongoing financial assistance from foreign countries to finance our Government’s reckless fiscal policies. Increasing America’s debt weakens us domestically and internationally. Leadership means that, ‘the buck stops here.’ Instead, Washington is shifting the burden of bad choices today onto the backs of our children and grandchildren. America has a debt problem and a failure of leadership. Americans deserve better.”– Senator Barack H. Obama, March 2006