GOP's debt limit OK may be short-term, Rep. Ryan says
WILLIAMSBURG, Va. — Republicans in the House of Representatives may press for only a short-term extension of borrowing authority to keep up pressure for significant spending cuts, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan said on Thursday.
Ryan, R-Wis., breaking a long public silence since his failed vice presidential bid in the November election, said he believes the Obama administration can and should prioritize payments to avoid a debt default in the event that an increase in the federal debt limit is delayed.
Discussing his party's budget strategy with reporters at a retreat for newly sworn-in House Republicans, Ryan stopped well short of threatening to push the country into default if the party's spending cut demands are not met.
The Wisconsin representative said Republicans were considering the best approach to use their leverage over fiscal deadlines in February and March to reduce deficits.
“We believe that it would be wrong if we walk out of this spring with no achievement on debt reduction whatsoever because that will hurt the country, that will hurt the economy,” Ryan said.
Among options under consideration are a short-term increase in the debt limit, Ryan said without specifying a time frame.
“We're discussing the possible virtue of a short-term debt limit extension, so that we have a better chance of getting the Senate and White House involved in discussions in March.”
The first of the fiscal deadlines, the exhaustion of federal borrowing capacity, will happen sometime between mid-February and mid-March. The second deadline, the delayed start of automatic spending cuts, will occur on March 1. And a third deadline will happen on March 27, as Congress must enact new funding for government agencies and programs.
Asked if he was willing to “shoot the hostage” and allow the United States go into default over spending cut demands, Ryan said he was “not willing to use any metaphors like that at all.”
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Murder charges dropped against sergeant who shot 2 unarmed Iraqi boys
- First Ebola case in U.S. confirmed in Dallas
- Intruder made it to East Room of White House, overpowered Secret Service officer
- Police link 2 more cases to University of Virginia suspect
- Medical marijuana use to get court test in Colo.
- Chicago flights resume after fire delayed travel in Pittsburgh, elsewhere
- Pentagon review puts Gitmo transfers on ice
- California becomes 1st state to ban plastic bags
- Feds say $100M in data hacked