Senators Chuck Schumer (NY), Ben Cardin (MD) , Mark Begich (AK) and Chris Coons (DE) warned this morning of a calamitous outcome if the GOP forces the U.S. to default on its debt for the first time in history. The chart below illustrates just how difficult it would be for our country to pay its bills (explanation of chart below).
Senator Schumer, explaining the stakes as shown above, said —
“We are definitely going to want to pay Social Security benefits, and that takes 50 billion dollars off the table.” [He took the Social Security tile off the obligations chart and placed it onto revenue chart]
And we have to make sure America’s seniors continue to get healthcare so we need to pay for Medicare and Medicaid. There goes another $50 billion [He took the Medicare/Medicaid chart off of the obligations chart and placed it onto the revenue chart]
So now we have 72 billion left. We have to pay our troops, keep our promise to America’s veterans, and fund our defense priorities. That is going to take us almost up to the limit. [He then took the troops, veterans, and defense tile off of the obligations chart and placed it on the revenue chart]
And we still have the interest on our debt, and that takes up most of the difference. [He then took the interest on treasury securities tile off of the obligations chart and placed it on the revenue chart]
We wouldn’t have a dime for Student loans, the FBI, Cancer Research, IRS refunds, or border patrol agents… What from this list are you going to remove to fund these jobs that keep America safe?
Do you want to stop paying hundreds of thousands of troops? [He removed the troops tile]. Do you want to stop paying 60 million social security recipients? [He removed the social security tile] That is the choice, and the consequences we face if we don’t raise the debt limit.”
As Senator Coons put it, “This is the most predictable financial disaster in our history. Let’s avoid it.”