Jan 7, 2013 No Comments ›› Dinah Tellya
(CNSNews.com) – White House Press Secretary Jay Carney placed the blame for the $16.4 trillion national debt on Congress, as he again asserted that President Barack Obama will not negotiate on raising the debt ceiling.
“Nobody forced Congress to rack up the bills that it incurred,” Carney told reporters on Monday. “And it is an abdication of responsibility to say we’re going to let the country default and cause global economic calamity simply because we’re not getting what we want in terms of our ideological agenda.”
The national debt has increased by $5 trillion since Obama took office in 2009.
Obama and House Republicans had a showdown in 2011 over raising the limit on the amount of money the government can borrow – the debt ceiling — when Republicans sought to reduce federal spending before borrowing more money.
That battle resulted in the compromise of forming a super committee from members of Congress to put together a debt reduction proposal or face automatic tax hikes and spending cuts (sequestration) by 2013, the so-called fiscal cliff.
On Jan. 1, Congress passed and Obama signed a negotiated deal to postpone the spending cuts and raise taxes only on incomes higher than $400,000. Although the payroll tax (for Security Security) rate is going up for all workers from 4.2 percent to 6.2 percent.
Congress must reach a deal on the debt ceiling by either February or March.