Sunday, July 31, 2011 | 2 a.m.
As a consequence of the looming economic crisis that may result from the inability of Congress to raise the U.S. government’s debt ceiling without “strings attached,” many are urging the president to issue an executive order raising the debt limit pursuant to Section 4 of the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution. Apparently, the president is reluctant to make such a bold move.
Section 4 states: “The validity of the public debt of the United States, authorized by law, including debts incurred for payment of pensions and bounties for services in suppressing insurrection or rebellion, shall not be questioned. But neither the United States nor any State shall assume or pay any debt or obligation incurred in aid of insurrection or rebellion against the United States, or any claim for the loss or emancipation of any slave; but all such debts, obligations and claims shall be held illegal and void.”
The language seems quite clear to me that the validity of the public debt of the United States shall not be questioned if authorized by law. Therefore, those who are sworn to uphold the law who do question raising the debt limit so we can pay obligations already incurred, and as authorized by law, are in violation of their oath of office. Those who refuse to vote to raise the debt limit, unless certain concessions are made by the opposing party, are violating the Constitution of the United States.
A bill that has been incurred, as authorized by law, is a bill that must be paid. No questions! So, the president should have stepped in and insisted that the bills get paid. He also should have reminded those who are in violation of their oath of office that there are possible repercussions.