Jan. 30 (Bloomberg) -- U.S. Speaker of the House John Boehner said today that a U.S. default would be a “financial disaster” and that the issue is not “even on the table.”
Boehner said in an interview on “Fox News Sunday” that the Obama administration must be willing to work with Republicans to cut spending if it seeks an increase in the government’s debt ceiling.
“I don’t think the American people will tolerate increasing the debt limit without serious reductions in spending and changes to the budget process so we can make sure this doesn’t happen again,” Boehner said.
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said in a Jan. 6 letter to congressional leaders that the U.S. government’s $14.29 trillion debt limit may be reached as soon as March 31 and “most likely” by May 16.
Boehner said he expected the U.S. House Appropriations Committee to make recommendations on spending cuts in the next 10 days and that legislation funding the government could come to a House vote during the week of Feb. 14. Boehner said he expected a separate vote on the question of raising the government debt ceiling.
“I think these are two opportunities that Congress has to deal with the administration to cut spending,” Boehner said.
William Daley, the new White House chief of staff, said in an interview on CBS’s “Face The Nation” that President Barack Obama will lay out a “very substantial” cut to the budget. Daley said any use of the debt ceiling for political leverage, “will run the possibility of spooking the markets.”
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