Senate Democrats back automatic debt limit hikes
WASHINGTON (AP) - Democrats controlling the Senate want to avoid future showdowns over the so-called debt ceiling.
They are proposing to give the president authority to authorize additional federal borrowing unless Congress can muster veto-proof margins to block him.
The move by Sen. Charles Schumer of New York and others drew immediate opposition from the chamber's top Republican and is a non-starter with the GOP-controlled House.
The idea is to prevent future battles over increasing the nation's borrowing cap. Debt limit battles this fall and in 2011 spooked financial markets and took the government precariously close to a default on its obligations.