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What the Antifederalists Can Teach Us on the Debt Ceiling Debate

Washington is in a tizzy. By the end of the month, funding for the national government expires, and the Treasury’s gimmicky “extraordinary measures” to pay the government’s debts will fall flat. Congress and President Trump have two options: cut spending and live off tax revenues or raise the debt ceiling.

That ceiling is a congressional limit on how much debt the national government can carry. It is much the same as a limit on a consumer’s credit card. Once the consumer reaches the limit, he can’t make any more purchases unless the bank increases it. The current ceiling is $19.8 trillion. Each citizen’s share is approximately $61,330.

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William J. Watkins, Jr. is a Research Fellow at the Independent Institute and author of the Independent Institute books, Crossroads for Liberty, Reclaiming the American Revolution, and Patent Trolls. He received his J.D. cum laude from the University of South Carolina School of Law and is a former law clerk to Judge William B. Traxler, Jr. of the U. S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit.

New from William J. Watkins Jr.!
CROSSROADS FOR LIBERTY: Recovering the Anti-Federalist Values of America’s First Constitution
What did the American Founders actually intend for the country, and does it even matter today? In a time of increasing turmoil over American history, politics, and society, Crossroads for Liberty takes an eye-opening look at the American Revolution, the Articles of Confederation, and the Constitution, and asks what we can learn from them. Readers will come away with a greater understanding of current political and constitutional issues, as well as a new perspective on American history.