The Debt Crisis Intensifies

Headline: “House passes GOP debt ceiling bill, as U.S. inches toward fiscal crisis.”

The bill is a compendium of right-wing extremist demands. There’s no chance that the senate will pass it, and Biden has said he would veto it if it reached his desk. Republicans presume that by threatening to cause the United States to default on its debts, all of which have all been previously authorized by Congress, the Democratic leadership will be forced to accede to their agenda. This is a case of non-prosecutable extortion. If Biden stands fast, Republicans won’t raise the debt limit, causing a default and resulting in an economic calamity. Republicans will blame the Democrats for it. They’ll repeat again and again: The meltdown happened on Biden’s watch; he is responsible for it; it would never have happened if Trump (or DeSantis (or whoever is the Republican nominee) were in the White House; elect a Republican to restore the nation’s honor and economic health. They will repeat this message day after day, hoping that enough people will believe it.

It looks more than ever to me as if Biden will have to act unilaterally to prevent a default, citing his authority to do so under the Constitution. It’s a mystery how the Supreme Court, controlled by right-wing ideologues, will rule on the issue. There’s reason to hope, but not to be optimistic.