Senators introduce Sense of the Senate resolution against President acting alone on debt limit

Amid talk that President Obama should circumvent Congress by issuing an executive order to raise the debt limit, two Republican lawmakers are taking steps to ensure that doesn’t happen.

Sens. Lindsey Graham of South Carolina and John Cornyn of Texas introduced Thursday a Sense of the Senate resolution to send a message to the White House that unilaterally raising the debt limit goes beyond the scope of the president’s authority. (O’s OFFER: Obama puts entitlement reform on the table)

“Every time the debt ceiling has been raised it has been through an act of collaboration between the President and Congress,” said Graham in a statement.

“We have a President, not a King,” he added. “Our resolution puts the Senate on record that any debt-limit increase, today or in the future, should be passed by Congress and signed by the President.”

Cornyn called the idea “unacceptable,” and the “the latest attempt by big-spending Democrats to short-circuit the Constitution to avoid making tough budget choices.”

In a Twitter town hall Wednesday, President Obama downplayed the idea of using the power of the presidency to instruct the Treasury Department to raise the debt limit. “I don’t think we should even get to the Constitutional issue,” said Obama. “Congress has the responsibility to make sure we pay our bills.”

Despite that, news surfaced early Thursday that the Treasury Department is secretly weighing their options for avoiding default, should the president and Congress fail to reach an agreement.

One of the options being considered, as reported by Reuters, is whether the Constitution gives the president the authority to act alone and approve the issuing of debt after the deadline of August 2. The constitutional question centers around a line in the 14th Amendment that says the country’s public debt “shall not be questioned.”

“Sense of the Senate” resolutions are not binding law. Instead, they are intended to express the official opinion of the Senate on a given issue.

  • doncicciofitipaldi

    Suuuuuuuuuuuuuure Regressives!!!!!!!!!! You LOVE the Constitution when it allows YOu to do what you like and HATE it when it allows the “other side” to circumvent the do-nothing House. Hipocricy at it’s worst!!! WHICH IS IT??? IS TEH CONSTITUTION LIKE YOUR BIBLE OR ISN’T IT? DUH!

    • BigRmv

      Don….ldi, you can’t possibly be as naive as you sound.

      Your rant this time is about one line in the 14th Amendment, with your thesis being that–if the Republicans don’t interpret this line as you do–then they don’t support the Constitution. And the president thinks he can just make an Executive Decision based on that one line and you’re alright with that.

      So, let me ask you: When the next Republican president declares–by Executive Decision–that he is nullifying all gun laws nationwide because the 2nd Amendment contains the phrase, “shall not be infringed,” will YOU be the first one on the Liberal team to applaud that decision? Or do you “not support the Constitution?”

  • 8second.ride

    “President Obama should circumvent Congress by issuing an executive order to raise the debt limit,”

    I dare him. That would be a sure way of getting rid of him. American people won’t stand for that.

  • mdmikeh

    If this happens the next republican president should just unilaterally raise the debt limit to $30T and start a kinetic military action with Iran; see who cries foul then. Such hypocrites.

  • tombt

    I sense a Constitutional crises down the road with this White House. Whether it is with Obama unilaterally acting to raise the debt ceiling or DOJ obstructing congress on the gun-running scandal. The lawlessness of this Administration will eventually force the hand of the GOP. I think Obama is looking forward to that showdown or to a crises that will allow him to further consolidate power. I fear for our nation.

    • doncicciofitipaldi

      Thenwrite YOUR DEER REPUBLICANS and sk them to stop playing with “our nation” so they can protect some millionaires and somne oil companies AND COME TO AN AGREEMENT. OTHERWISE, CONTINUE TO BE AFFRAID AND DO NOTHING.

      • BigRmv

        “Deer Republicans?” Oh, Don…aldi (*shaking head*)!

        Riddle me this, Batman: Why do the Democrats all assume the Republicans are the ones who need to make the compromise here? Democrats can fix this problem simply by agreeing to the Republican plan.

  • Falcon11

    Lindsey’s looking a little ethereal in that photo.

  • Hamilton-Jeffersonian

    Republicans love the constitution. Except for the parts they don’t like.

    • 8second.ride

      And the only time you bring up the Constitution is when you want to circumvent it.

      When I took my Oath of Enlistment, I swore to defend the Constitution. Did you have your fingers double-dog crossed during that part? or are you really the liar everybody thinks you are?

      • Hamilton-Jeffersonian

        Go read the 14th amendment. The problem with teabaggers is that they “think” they understand the constitution when, in fact, their constitutional education is derived from the idiotic quotes of people like Palin and Bachman.

        • doncicciofitipaldi

          I MORE THAN AGREE!

        • BigRmv

          Such a stupid, incorrect and over-reaching statement.

          The Constitution has been around a lot longer than anyone you know or read about in the papers. I got my schooling re: our Constitution in Middle School, High School, College, and independent study. My interpretation is based on the words contained within that document.

          My advice to you is to read the Constitution in the manner one should read the Bible: Slowly and Prayerfully.

  • virginiagentleman

    Sense of the Senate? An oxymoron for sure, and the same can be said for sense in government as well. While it appears the president may have legal authority to raise the debt ceiling through executive decree, that tactic may well unleash unbridled fury towards him in both congress and the citizenry. Our government has become disfunctional. Congress has made itself almost irrealevant through its petty bickering and backstabbing ways. Presidents are not kings, and the Citizenry are not lynch mobs. The lines are becoming blurred, and I fear for this nation. Does ANY government official act on behalf of the citizen? Or do they just act on the behalf of party and continuence of their power, their re-elections? At the rate we are going, very soon there will be nothing worthwhile left to exercise power over, by either party. Just sayin’.

  • semihardrock

    VERY NICE…Too bad his opinion will not count as the GOP does not have majority support in the Senate! Like Harry would EVER dethrown the King! YEA…SURE…

  • FloatingRock

    So Lindsey Graham disapproves of a potential legislative power-grab by King Obama on the debt ceiling, yet in Libya Lindsay Graham approves of King Obama’s un-Constitutional war.