In the summer of 2011, some Democrats urged President Obama to simply raise the debt ceiling himself if Republicans refused to pass legislation.
There was the “trillion dollar coin” idea, wherein the government mints itself out of trouble via an arcane bullion law.
Then there was the 14th Amendment option. Here, the president would have to take a modern interpretation on the Civil War-era amendment about the “validity of the public debt of the United States,” and surely face legal action.
Now, as the two parties gear up for another debt ceiling bout, Greg Valliere at Potomac Research thinks Obama may be coming around to the idea of acting on his own. Valliere writes to clients:
Obama is not shy about using executive authority, and he surely has heard from Constitutional scholars who believe he has the authority to raise the debt ceiling on his own. (Bill Clinton urged Obama to take this approach in the summer of 2011.) Fearless forecast:
if Treasury is out of money in early November and a default looks possible, Obama will simply raise the debt ceiling. He’ll face instant litigation, but that wouldn’t be resolved for months.
It seems the president is not willing to negotiate at all for a raise in the debt ceiling, as he made clear to Speaker John Boehner in a phone call last week. We’ll see what happens.