By James Oliphant / Los Angeles Times / July 12, 2011, 11:00 a.m.
A failure to raise the nation’s debt ceiling could result in some seniors not receiving Social Security checks, President Obama said in an interview with CBS News that will air Tuesday evening.
“I cannot guarantee that those checks go out on August 3rd if we haven’t resolved this issue. Because there may simply not be the money in the coffers to do it,” Obama told “CBS Evening News” anchor Scott Pelley.
The assertion marks the latest attempt by the White House to frame the stakes in the sometimes abstract debt-ceiling debate in terms the American public can grasp, while placing increasing pressure on congressional Republicans.
During his news conference Monday, Obama spoke in similar terms, saying a failure to raise the $14.3-trillion limit would result in “a crisis of confidence in the markets, and suddenly interest rates are going up significantly, and everybody is paying higher interest rates on their car loans, on their mortgages, on their credit cards, and that’s sucking up a whole bunch of additional money out of the pockets of the American people.”
In the CBS interview, Obama added that “this is not just a matter of Social Security checks. These are veterans’ checks, these are folks on disability and their checks. There are about 70 million checks that go out.”
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