WASHINGTON, Dec. 10 (UPI) -- Language that would raise the U.S. debt ceiling will be included in a defense spending bill up for a vote next week, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Thursday.
The deficit is expected to grow by nearly $1.4 trillion this year. House leaders haven't reached consensus on how much to raise the ceiling, now at $12.1 trillion, but a figure as high as an $1.925 trillion was being discussed, The Washington Post reported.
Treasury officials reported to congressional leaders that the cap must be raised by New Year's Eve or the federal government would risk running out of money for Social Security and veterans' payments in January, the Post said.
"We need to have a vehicle so that the Senate can vote on it, and it is our intention to have something on the Department of Defense bill," Pelosi said during her weekly news conference.
The House earlier voted to raise the limit to nearly $13 trillion as part of its budget plan, but the Senate never acted on the matter.
Moderate and fiscally conservative Democrats in both chambers have muddled the matter because they are concerned about mounting debt in the face of President Barack Obama's desire to pass healthcare reform and a jobs bill, the Post said.