August 02,2005

Baucus Comments on New Debt Limit Estimates

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) U.S. Senator Max Baucus, ranking member of the Senate FinanceCommittee, released new information from the Treasury Department regarding the statutory limiton the federal debt. According to the Treasury Department, the limit on federal debt will nothave to be raised in 2005. The agency had previously estimated that the government wouldreach the debt limit in 2005.

Currently, the limit is $8.184 trillion. The Congressional budget resolution instructs theFinance Committee to report legislation by September 30, 2005 to increase the debt limit by$781 billion. Senator Baucus issued the following statement on the news of the debt limit:

“The Treasury Department has informed me that it is reasonably confident that thegovernment will not reach the debt limit in 2005. The Treasury Department’s best estimate isthat the government will reach that limit in the first quarter of calendar year 2006.

“Although it is good news that the government will not hit the debt limit as soon as wehad expected, the broader financial picture is still quite troubling. Since 2002, the governmenthas had to raise the debt ceiling four times, including the impending increase. With this nextincrease, the government will have increased the debt limit by more than $3 trillion since 2002.In the face of record deficits, government needs to show more fiscal discipline.”