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Here and Now with Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson
Public radio's live
midday news program
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Monday, January 14, 2013

Obama Demands Quick Action On Debt Limit

President Barack Obama speaks about the debt limit in the East Room of the White House in Washington on Monday. (Carolyn Kaster/AP)

President Barack Obama speaks about the debt limit in the East Room of the White House in Washington on Monday. (Carolyn Kaster/AP)

President Barack Obama demanded Monday that Congress raise the federal debt limit quickly, warning that “Social Security benefits and veterans checks will be delayed if they don’t,” and warning Republicans not to demand concessions in exchange.

“They will not collect a ransom in exchange for not crashing the economy,” he said at the final news conference of his first term. “The full faith and credit of the United States of America is not a bargaining chip. And they better decide quickly because time is running short.”

The president also said he will soon ask Congress to enact new gun legislation in the wake of the shootings a month ago that left 20 elementary students dead in Newtown, Conn. Facing stiff opposition from the National Rifle Association, he conceded lawmakers may not approve everything he asks for.

Guest:

  • Rick Klein, senior Washington editor for ABC World News and co-host of the the network’s political webcast, “Top Line.” He tweets @rickklein.

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