Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said Wednesday that lawmakers know it is "unthinkable" that the United States could default on its debt and will raise the debt limit to avoid it.
"The markets understand, and I can say this with complete confidence, that the U.S. will meet its obligations, that Congress will act as it always has to make sure we meet those obligations," Geithner said at a forum sponsored by The Atlantic magazine.
Treasury has warned that the current $14.3 trillion debt limit must be raised soon to give the government room to keep borrowing. There is some resistance among conservative Republicans who want any further hike in the limit linked to specific reductions in government spending.
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