The United States has reached a significant milestone as its public debt surpasses $33 trillion, marking the first time in history that it has exceeded this staggering figure. This comes at a critical juncture, with less than two weeks remaining until the U.S. federal government could potentially face a shutdown due to a lack of budgetary provisions for its operations.
The U.S. Treasury Department has officially reported that, as of Monday (September 18), the nation’s public debt, which represents the money borrowed by the federal government to finance its activities, has surged to an alarming $33.04 trillion.
This substantial increase in public debt can be attributed to several factors, including a significant rise in federal spending between fiscal years 2019 and 2021, which has propelled the public debt to unprecedented levels. The surge in government borrowing can be attributed to multiple factors, including tax cuts, economic stimulus measures, and a decrease in tax revenues due to widespread unemployment triggered by the COVID-19 pandemic.
The escalating issue of public debt has placed the U.S. Congress in a precarious deadlock, as lawmakers struggle to reach a consensus on passing a spending bill to fund government operations in the upcoming budget cycle. The deadline for Congress to approve this spending bill is September 30.
As this fiscal battle unfolds, Republican lawmakers are advocating for stringent spending cuts by the federal government, emphasizing the need to rein in the escalating public debt. In contrast, Democrats are rallying behind President Joe Biden’s initiatives, including the Inflation Reduction Act, which carries a price tag of over $1 trillion over the course of the next decade.
The escalating public debt crisis underscores the pressing need for lawmakers to address the nation’s fiscal challenges and chart a path toward financial stability. The outcome of these deliberations will have far-reaching consequences for the U.S. economy and its citizens, underscoring the gravity of the current fiscal impasse.