Scholar cautions Dems on constitutional argument against debt limit

By Stephen C. Webster
Thursday, June 30, 2011 8:47 EDT
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Constitutional scholar Jonathan Turley spoke to Current TV’s liberal host Keith Olbermann last night and revealed that top Democrats had approached him for advice on the argument that the country’s constitutional debt limit may actually be “unconstitutional.”

Though Turley hedged his bets on a federal court siding with that argument, he noted that the matter had never been challenged in a court, meaning it could have an unexpected outcome. If the president decided to ignore the debt limit, however, it could add a constitutional crisis to an economic recession, setting up for an even more unexpected and potentially volatile political situation.

“What would happen next is the critical question,” Turley said. “Congress could go to court. They could, for example, in the House of Representatives take an official vote to challenge an act of the president. They could even alleged that he is violating federal law by taking that sort of action — so, it could lead to a very serious confrontation.”

This video is from Countdown with Keith Olbermann, broadcast Wednesday, June 29, 2011.

Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster
Stephen C. Webster is the senior editor of Raw Story, and is based out of Austin, Texas. He previously worked as the associate editor of The Lone Star Iconoclast in Crawford, Texas, where he covered state politics and the peace movement’s resurgence at the start of the Iraq war. Webster has also contributed to publications such as True/Slant, Austin Monthly, The Dallas Business Journal, The Dallas Morning News, Fort Worth Weekly, The News Connection and others. Follow him on Twitter at @StephenCWebster.
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