U.S. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen says the US will tumble into an “economic calamity” if Congress fails to raise the debt ceiling.
In a new ABC News interview, Yellen “strongly urges” Congress to raise the ceiling, and projects that the government will run out of cash sometime in early June if it isn’t dealt with.
She also says that scenario would be “the first time in the history of America” that the country would fail to make payments that are due.
“And whether it’s defaulting on interest payments that are due on the debt or payments due for Social Security recipients or to Medicare providers – we would simply not have enough cash to meet all of our obligations. And it’s widely agreed that financial and economic chaos would ensue.
U.S. Treasury securities are the safest bedrock security underlying the global financial system. A failure of the United States to honor all of its debt would call into question our creditworthiness.”
Last month, House Republicans passed a bill to raise the debt ceiling by $1.5 trillion, on the condition that President Joe Biden also signs off on deep spending cuts.
Biden, however, reportedly said that he will not engage in spending negotiations that are married to the debt ceiling.
Biden is set to meet with Congressional leaders on Tuesday, according to Yellen.
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