Bill To prioritise Debt Payments, Troop Salaries Stalled In Congress

US army

Photo: Wikimedia Commons

Legislation to prioritise payments of the nation’s debt obligations and funding for military salaries is being held up by leaders in both the U.S. House and Senate, POLITICO reports.Bills introduced by Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-TX) and Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX) have stalled since March, when they were introduced to continue troop salaries in the event of a government shutdown.

With the debt ceiling deadline rapidly approaching, both lawmakers are renewing calls for their bills to be considered, and adding a requirement that federal debt obligations also receive priority.

After August 2nd, the Treasury Department says the government will be forced to pick and choose which federal programs and obligations to fund, until it may resume borrowing.

The Treasury Department has refused to speculate which programs it would fund in the event of the that debt ceiling is not raised in time, leaving open the potential for 150,000 troops deployed in combat zones — and over 1.3 million active duty troops globally — to go unpaid.

The government will have $172.4 billion to pay its August bills, of which military pay is $2.9 billion and debt obligations are $29 billion, according to a study by the Bipartisan Policy centre. 

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