House Republicans hope for quick action to raise debt limit until 2015

Feb. 8, 2014 at 12:10 PM
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WASHINGTON, Feb. 8 (UPI) -- U.S. House Republicans say they are moving quickly to come up with a bill that would raise the federal debt limit until after the November elections.

The bill would fix the Medicare reimbursement rate for doctors and reverse cuts in cost of living benefits for the military, Politico reported Friday. The changes, which would lift the debt limit until February or March of 2015, would be paid for by an extra year of cuts to mandatory spending and modifications in pension contributions.

The bill would require action soon.

Treasury Secretary Jack Lew told congressional leaders in a letter Friday "extraordinary measures" employed after the debt ceiling is reached could not be used after Feb. 27.

"At that point, Treasury would be left with only the cash on hand and any incoming revenue to meet our country's commitments," he said.

The bill could come up for a vote next week, but the House will only be in session three days before recessing for a week. Members won't return until Feb. 25, two days before Lew says the debt ceiling must be lifted.

If the bill is not approved, the only option for House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, could be to pass a debt limit bill without any legislative changes, Politico said.

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