February 19, 2014
Congress’ debt-limit vote last week effectively handed the executive branch a blank check to increase spending, Heritage Foundation expert Romina Boccia explains:
Contrary to widespread reporting by the media, Congress did not actually increase the debt limit on February 12. Instead, Congress rendered the debt limit statute inoperative, thereby waiving the debt limit, through March 15, 2015. This means that there is no debt limit in place to control borrowing for more than an entire year. . .
When Congress suspended the debt limit through March 15, 2015, it did not limit the Treasury’s borrowing at all. The debt limit will not bind the Treasury until midnight on the day the suspension expires. This is like Congress handing the executive a blank check with an expiration date. The blank check authorizes the Treasury to borrow as much as needed to finance all government spending authorized by law to occur during the period of the suspension. With a debt limit suspension, Congress effectively abdicates its constitutional power to control the borrowing of the federal government.
Do you think Congress ought to exercise its powers under the Constitution to control the power of the purse?