Obama: No, I can’t promise that Social Security checks will go out in August if we don’t reach a deal
See James Pethokoukis’s new graph for a response to this. There should be plenty of revenue in August to cover entitlement checks and interest on the debt if Treasury has the legal authority to prioritize payments, which isn’t as clear as one would hope. Either way, the more voter angst O can create about default — and given the movement among independents, he’s doing a fine job — the more pressure there is on the GOP to make a deal and the more protected he’ll be politically if we hit X Day on August 2 without an agreement. Which, of course, is the point of McConnell’s gimmick today: If his bill were to pass, responsibility for keeping Social Security flowing coming would shift suddenly from those darned millionaire-hugging Republicans to the debt-loving Obama administration. You are willing to unilaterally order another $2 trillion in debt right before the election in order to keep grandma’s checks coming, aren’t you, champ?
ed: The only way those checks won’t go out, is if he doesn’t want them to.