President Barack Obama is expected to ask Congress to raise the Nation’s borrowing limit by $1.2 trillion this week, marking the third and final increase from a deal negotiated over summer.
The Treasury Department says that the increase is needed because the Federal government will be within $100 billion of its current spending limit by Friday. The newest increase will bring the amount of money borrowed by the U.S. government to fund its operations to $16.4 trillion and allow it to keep borrowing until after the 2012 Presidential election.
The enormity of the debt has fueled intense partisan debate in Congress over spending and taxes. Congress could reject the President’s request, but he can veto its objection. If Congress takes no action, the spending measure will take automatic effect after Jan. 14, according to The Associated Press.