Biden To Use the 14th Amendment To Do What?

Gage Skidmore from Surprise, AZ, United States of America, CC BY-SA 2.0 , via Wikimedia Commons

( – Key political figures have pointed out that President Biden has the option to use the powers of a clause in the 14th Amendment to stop the country from defaulting on its debt as early as next month.

On Friday, during a sit-down interview with MSNBC, President Biden disclosed that he had not yet considered that option, but left the possibility open. On Sunday, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned that it would be a “constitutional crisis” if the President had to use the 14th Amendment in order to handle the nation’s debt.

According to legal scholars, the clause in question would provide Biden the option of continuing to issue debt without needing to lift or suspend the debt ceiling. In an interview on ABC’s “This Week,” Yellen argued that the only way to ensure the security of the country’s financial systems would be for Congress to do its job and lift the debt ceiling. This move would allow the country to continue paying its bills without having to consider the possibility of President Biden issuing debt on his own.

Still, despite Yellen’s warning, White House aides have been examining the possibility of Biden being the one to take action in order to ensure that the country does not default on its debt. Lawmakers on the other hand have maintained that the only way to avoid defaulting is for Biden and Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), to reach an agreement on a debt ceiling increase.

The negotiations between the two were at a standstill since February, but now they have a meeting scheduled on Tuesday to negotiate a debt limit increase. In the past few months, Biden has maintained that an increase should come with any contingencies, while McCarthy has maintained that spending cuts should be part of the deal.

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