As negotiations over the debt ceiling continue, with the deadline to increase the ceiling coming up in just over a week on June 1st, President Biden has weighed the possibility of using the 14th amendment to unilaterally raise the debt ceiling without Congressional input.
Legal scholars have said that the move would be unlikely to pass legal muster, but he has received encouragement from Democrats in the House and Senate such as Senator John Fetterman (D-Pa.).
Fetterman received significant backlash from Republicans and on social media after he said that allowing the President to unilaterally wipe out debt is the ‘whole reason why’ the 14th Amendment exists, ignoring that it includes other components such as an Equal Protection clause and giving freed slave citizenship.
“”This is less surprising when you remember that the acting Senator/person making all the decisions in this office is a former Chief of Staff for Harry Reid,” said former NRSC Chairman Matt Whitlock.
This is less surprising when you remember that the acting Senator/ person making all the decisions in this office is a former Chief of Staff for Harry Reid. https://t.co/qAbrjBZgIk
— Matt Whitlock (@mattdizwhitlock) May 24, 2023
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“Not sure this potato can even count to 14 without the help of cue cards and a prompter, but we’re supposed to believe he’s suddenly an expert on the intricacies of federal bankruptcy laws,” Said Federalist CEO Sean Davis.
Not sure this potato can even count to 14 without the help of cue cards and a prompter, but we’re supposed to believe he’s suddenly an expert on the intricacies of federal bankruptcy laws. https://t.co/47WXE6d2Q0
— Sean Davis (@seanmdav) May 24, 2023
Fetterman made a return to the Senate last month after taking a leave of absence due to issues relating to depression. He has had a series of health issues since his election to the Senate.
FOX News Reports–
This is the whole reason why the 14th Amendment exists, and we need to be prepared to use it. We cannot let these reckless Republicans hold the economy hostage.
— Senator John Fetterman (@SenFettermanPA) May 18, 2023
Sen. John Fetterman, D-Pa., is facing scrutiny after he claimed last week the “whole reason” for the 14th Amendment — best known for its extension of citizenship to former slaves and guaranteeing “equal protection of the laws” — was to assist with debt negotiations.
Fetterman’s comments came as he pushed for President Biden to use the 14th Amendment to avoid a default on the nation’s debt — a move that legal experts have repeatedly said would be unlikely to withstand judicial scrutiny.
Fetterman’s remarks drew immediate backlash, with multiple social media users taking aim at the junior senator for failing to recognize that the 14th Amendment has greater significance.
“How about this: we will take you seriously as a constitutional scholar when you stop dressing like an 11 year-old at a skate park,” former Trump adviser Stephen Miller wrote in a tweet.