Boehner: GOP Will Pass 'Responsible' Debt Bill

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Speaker John Boehner says the GOP-controlled House will "do its job" and pass legislation to lift the nation's borrowing cap and keep the government running, but will insist that Democrats accept new spending controls.

Boehner acknowledged Monday that failing to lift the so-called debt ceiling would have bad consequences. But he also said that "allowing our spending problem to go unresolved" would be just as troublesome.

Without congressional action, the government would have to default on its obligations, a prospect that could send markets into a spiral and do broader harm to the fragile economy.

The Ohio Republican's statement came after President Barack Obama told reporters he was willing to negotiate on the budget but wouldn't allow the debt ceiling to be held captive in the process.


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WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama says Congress' failure to raise the government's borrowing authority would delay payments of benefits to veterans and Social Security recipients. He again warned that he will not negotiate on raising the debt ceiling, aiming to pin the burden of an unprecedented default on congressional Republicans.

The government has hit its $16.4 trillion borrowing limit and is expected to run out of ways to meet all of its obligations around March 1, perhaps earlier. Republicans wants spending cuts in exchange for raising the debt ceiling.

Threatening to not raise the debt ceiling, Obama said, is "absurd."

Without an increase, the government would not have enough money to pay interest to debt holders and pay for all government programs.


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