Your New Debt-Deal Deadline: July 22

White House says agreement needed by then to avoid default
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Jul 1, 2011 12:08 PM CDT
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, center, walks with Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin, left, and Sen. Charles Schumer after a news conference Thursday.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

(Newser) – The date for what may or may not be financial doomsday is now July 22. Both the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times say the White House has figured that to be the do-or-die day to hammer out a deal with Republicans to avoid an unprecedented default on the national debt. The government has enough funds to keep operating under the debt ceiling until August 2, but it will take time to get legislation through the House and Senate before then to raise the borrowing limit. Hence the July 22 deadline.

Democrats say the stakes are enormous: "If we didn't pay our bills, it would plunge the United States not into a recession, not into the so-called double-dip recession, but into a full-blown depression," maintains Harry Reid, who canceled the Senate's July 4 recess. Republicans say those claims are exaggerated: Fears of a "catastrophic collapse of the markets" are "ridiculous," says Sen. Pat Toomey.

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