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should stop lying to the American people.
The Treasury secretary’s open letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi on Tuesday oozed dishonesty.
“While I have a high degree of confidence that Treasury will be able to finance the U.S. government through December 15,” Yellen wrote, “there are scenarios in which Treasury would be left with insufficient remaining resources to continue to finance the operations of the U.S. government beyond this date.”
Yellen then begged for what the Big Government Left craves like junkies coveting syringes. “To ensure the full faith and credit of the United States, it is critical that Congress raise or suspend the debt limit as soon as possible.”
Yes, more federal debt! Just what America needs as the rising tide of red ink nears $29 trillion and climbs ever skyward.
Yellen’s comments are not even new lies. They are cliches. “Everybody knows” that Treasury revenues are so tight that default looms, just over the horizon. The Left’s incessantly screamed rubbish has become received wisdom.
And yet it is completely bogus.
Yellen’s very own department publishes the Monthly Treasury Statement. It carefully tracks Uncle Sam’s cashflows. Fiscal Year 2021 federal receipts totaled $4.046 trillion. Net-interest payments equaled $352.3 billion. Revenues outran debt-service obligations by $3.694 trillion or 1,048 percent.
In other words, taxpayers pumped into the Treasury more than 10 times the money needed to pay interest on U.S. bonds and, thus, avoid an Argentine-flavored default. Like monthly MasterCard payments, one need not disburse the entire balance to prevent default. Monthly-minimum payments keep everyone happy.
Similarly, Treasury does not need to fund the whole national debt in one month. So long as Treasury keeps its monthly debt promises, investors and markets smile.
The closest Uncle Sam came to missing this requirement last fiscal year was in August, when Washington collected $268.4 billion, more than five times beyond that month’s $41.8 billion in interest.
Too many Republicans accept the Left’s massive lie that “default is just around the corner.” Thankfully, some GOP lawmakers recognize this Democrat fraud.
Republican Senators Pat Toomey of Pennsylvania, Rick Scott of Florida, and 10 co-sponsors have introduced the Full Faith and Credit Act. FFCA would require that Treasury pay interest and other key items first, before purchasing luxuries (e.g., $450,000 in reparations for individual illegal aliens) much like paying rent and credit card bills before buying Prosecco and ski-lift tickets.
“Washington spending is out of control, with Democrats wanting to add trillions more to our growing debt,” said Senator Ron Johnson. “Inflation is wiping out wage gains, and Democrats want to suspend the debt ceiling without enacting any fiscal controls. I’m happy to co-sponsor Sen. Scott and Sen. Toomey’s Full Faith and Credit Act that ensures the federal government does not default on its debt and would prioritize spending to protect the men and women in our military and those reliant on Social Security, Medicare, and veteran benefits.”
Republicans should insist on an immediate rollcall vote on FFCA.
If it fails, Senate Democrat Leader Chuck Schumer of New York surely will move to hike the debt limit. If he asks Senate GOP Chief Mitch McConnell to help, the Kentuckian should tell Schumer to pound egg creams. Schumer, united Democrats, and a tie-breaking Vice President Kamala Harris can make this happen. McConnell owes Schumer less than nothing.
McConnell infuriated conservatives on October 7 when he and 10 other Republicans helped Schumer extend the debt limit by $480 billion through December 3. McConnell, at least publicly, got bupkis for this complete surrender, although some claim that McConnell sacrificed these debt-limit votes to protect the filibuster.
If so, McConnell should have told Schumer to make that pledge verbally on the Senate floor, put it in writing, and bless it with a binding, recorded vote. Instead, McConnell, at most, got whispered words from Schumer, which could be drowned out among shouted, he said-he said denials.
Even worse, after McConnell & Co. concluded their backstabbing, Schumer lacked the grace to thank them for doing so. Instead, Schumer donned his brass knuckles and went full-Joe Pesci on the hapless McConnell.
“Despite immense opposition from Leader McConnell and the Members of his conference,” Schumer said, “our caucus held together, and we pulled our country back from the cliff’s edge that Republicans tried to push us over.”
Clocked, McConnell whined to Biden.
“Last night, in a bizarre spectacle, Senator Schumer exploded in a rant that was so partisan, angry, and corrosive that even Democratic Senators were visibly embarrassed by him and for him,” McConnell wrote to the president. “This childish behavior only further alienated the Republican members who helped facilitate this short-term patch.”
McConnell should demand an FFCA vote and let Schumer and his comrades boost the debt limit, if they must. Republicans should spend the next month telling Americans the truth about this Democrat Big Lie: Washington has abundant revenue to pay federal creditors. Default is as necessary and likely as a visit from Sasquatch.