The Debt Ceiling

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew sent a letter to Congress announcing that the debt limit must be raised by February 27, or the nation would risk a technical default. The debt limit or debt ceiling is the total amount of money that the US government is authorized to borrow to meet its existing legal obligations, including Social Security and Medicare benefits, military salaries, interest on the national debt, tax refunds, and other payments. The debt limit does not authorize new spending commitments. It simply allows the government to finance existing legal obligations that Congresses and presidents of both parties have made in the past. (Learn more.)

Raising the debt limit isn’t new. Since 1960, Congress has acted 78 separate times to permanently raise, temporarily extend, or revise the definition of the debt limit -– 49 times under Republican presidents and 29 times under Democratic presidents. Here are some recent proposals in Congress addressing the debt limit:

Bills Related to the Debt Ceiling

We’re spotlighting bills related to the debt ceiling or limit. Weigh in and POPVOX will deliver your message to Congress, guaranteed.

Please keep in mind that highlighting a bill doesn’t imply a POPVOX endorsement in any way. Rather, we’re simply trying to offer one more way to stay informed of an overwhelmingly complex legislative system.