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January 09, 2013

Why Obama Isn't Likely to Mint a $1 Trillion Coin

Megan McArdle: "I think--and I assume the White House does as well--that there's a substantial risk that this sort of nominally-legal-but-obviously-tendentious reading of the law would trigger a selloff in US bonds. Minting a $1 trillion coin neatly end-runs GOP obstructionists, but only by proving that the president himself has little respect for the institutional restraints on his office. So while the pundit in me is eager to see how this would play out, the US citizen in me is afraid of the effect that this would have on my country. I assume that our president shares these sort of concerns."

Felix Salmon: "It would effectively mark the demise of the three-branch system of government, by allowing the executive branch to simply steamroller the rights and privileges of the legislative branch. Yes, the legislature is behaving like a bunch of utter morons if they think that driving the US government into default is a good idea. But it's their right to behave like a bunch of utter morons."


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