The Corner

More Contingency Plan

More details from McConnell’s office:

The initial legislation would authorize the President to submit a request to Congress asking to increase the debt limit by $700 billion, and would require submission of a plan to reduce spending by a greater amount.

Upon receipt of the President’s request, the debt limit would be provisionally increased by $100 billion to provide breathing room and avert an August 2nd default.

The House and Senate would have 15 days to disapprove of the request.

Within three days of the President’s request, it would be in order for the House and Senate to introduce a joint resolution disapproving of the President’s request.

Under expedited consideration of the Resolution of Disapproval, the resolution would be placed directly on the Senate calendar; the Motion to Proceed to the resolution would be privileged; there would be 10 hours of debate and passage would require a simple majority.

If either chamber defeats the resolution, the remaining $600 billion increase would be allowed.

If both chambers pass the resolution, it would be sent to the President for a veto or signature.

If vetoed, debate on an override would be limited to one hour.

If the veto is overridden (which would require a 2/3 vote) in both chambers, then the request would be denied and the provisional $100 billion increase revoked.

If the veto is sustained in either chamber, the remaining $600 billion increase would be allowed.

For the second and third requests in fall 2011 and summer 2012, the President could request an increase of the debt limit by $900 billion once the Treasury Department determines that the country is within $100 billion of the debt limit. The President would also be required to submit a plan to reduce spending by a greater amount.  Each of these subsequent requests would be subject to the same disapproval process outlined above.

Rich Lowry is the editor of National Review. He can be reached via email: comments.lowry@nationalreview.com. 

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