The debt ceiling is unconstitutional

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jul 31, 2011 2:06 AM GMT
    There's been a lot of talk about Obama invoking the 14th amendment to raise the debt ceiling. So, I've been looking at it and thinking it through and I don't think he should invoke it to raise the debt ceiling.

    Rather, I think that the amendment makes the entire argument moot. The government is forbidden by the amendment to renege on what it owes. The debt is the result of previously congressional spending bills, all of which resulted in legitimate debt. Said debt is inviolate, so there cannot be a debt ceiling.

    Instead, congress will have to do it's job and pass the next appropriation bill, which by the 14th amendment, must include the payments on interest and then - if we're unable to borrow further - decide how to spend the rest of the revenue.

    And the Republican controlled House will have to face up to whatever they're willing to include in that appropriation and the ire of the voters if they say, pay for defense contractors instead of Medicare. Or, they can close the borrowing window of Federal Reserve, which will stop commerce bold, or pay Social Security. It's all up to them.

    Obama should simply stop playing their game and leave Bohner et al with the hot potato.
  • Webster666

    Posts: 9217

    Jul 31, 2011 2:10 AM GMT

    The United States government is statutorily prohibited from issuing paper currency in excess of the debt ceiling limit.

    However, that does not apply to coinage. 31 USC ยง 5112(k) provides:

    The Secretary [of the Treasury] may mint and issue platinum bullion coins and proof platinum coins in accordance with such specifications, designs, varieties, quantities, denominations, and inscriptions as the Secretary, in the Secretary's discretion, may prescribe from time to time.

    So, issue two or three platinum coins in the denomination of one trillion dollars, deposit them, and borrow against them. Perhaps those three years at law school weren't a complete waste of time.