John Boehner Says Debt Ceiling Vote Not Guaranteed

Apr 26, 2011, 11:13 by David Hope

U.S. House Speaker John Boehner says he can't guarantee a vote to raise the debt ceiling, the latest round of chicken on letting the nation go into default.

Boehner, R-Ohio, also demanded President Barack Obama yield to Republican demands to dramatically change "the way we spend the people's money," Politico reported.

"If the president doesn't get serious about the need to address our fiscal nightmare, yeah, there's a chance it [the debt limit vote] could not happen," Boehner told Politico Monday after touring manufacturing company in Greenville, Ohio. "But that's not my goal."

The vote to increase the borrowing ceiling beyond the current limit of $14 trillion has become a defining issue for the House Republican majority that campaigned last year on promises to dramatically cut government spending and change the way government does business.

Treasury officials have warned failure to raise the debt ceiling could lead to catastrophes in financial markets and the economy.

For any deal on raising the debt ceiling, Boehner said GOP goals such as controls on discretionary spending and altering entitlement programs such as Medicare and Medicaid must be attached, Politico reported.

He didn't commit to scheduling a vote before July 4, which the Treasury Department said is close to when the United States will max out its borrowing limit.

Source: UPI