Default Faster Next Time, Please

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With their plan dissolving this may become a moot point, but I mentioned earlier how the House GOP leadership plan unveiled this morning included a provision that would bar the Treasury Department from taking extraordinary measures to avert default whenever we approach the debt ceiling again the next time.

Enough of this skating around default — we want to feel the pain of imminent default quicker next time!

Here’s the rationale for that provision, according to the GOP’s outline of its plan:

[T]he House plan would bar the Treasury Department from using accounting gimmicks known as “extraordinary measures,” increasing the transparency of the federal budget process and prohibiting what economist Donald Marron calls the “embarrassingly casual” use today of such measures by the Treasury Secretary. In the era of President Reagan and House Speaker Tip O’Neill, short-term debt limit increases with hard dates and no gimmicks were the norm. The House plan seeks to restore transparency to the process and deny bureaucrats the ability to use budget gimmicks to mislead the public about the financial condition of the United States.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

David Kurtz is Managing Editor and Washington Bureau Chief of Talking Points Memo where he oversees the news operations of TPM and its sister sites.
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