Republican Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky said Wednesday that doomsday scenarios about the debt ceiling and default were “completely dishonest.”
“They’re completely dishonest and worry the markets, and are bad for the country and bad for all of us by saying ‘oh, we might default.’ There is absolutely no reason for us to default,” Paul told Fox Business host Larry Kudlow, a former Trump administration adviser.
“Our interest payments are about 400 billion,” Paul continued. “We bring in about five trillion, so we have plenty of money to pay our interest payments. We have plenty of money to pay our soldiers, to pay our social security and to pay for Medicare.”
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen informed Congress that the country reached the debt ceiling of $31.4 trillion Thursday as House Republicans have demanded that any increase in the limit be accompanied by spending cuts. The White House is refusing to negotiate, accusing Republicans of taking the economy “hostage.”
“I don’t think you should ever threaten default of the world’s safest security, which is the U.S. dollar, threatening to raise interest rates and undermine the kind of progress we’ve made thus far,” White House economic adviser Jared Bernstein said during a Friday appearance on MSNBC. Democratic Rep. Eric Swalwell of California floated the idea of using a discharge petition to force through legislation to increase the debt limit.
“We’re about a third overdrawn, so there’s an enormous amount of government we’d have to trim,” Paul said. “Now, if you do it over a five-year period, what I proposed recently, you bring the baseline down, you cut $100 billion immediately and then you freeze spending for about four or five years. Guess what? You actually achieve balance through growth, and so it can be done and it can be done with very small amounts.”
The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment from the Daily Caller News Foundation.
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