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Tim Pawlenty: No Credit Risk In Debt Default If We Pay Foreign Investors First

A week ago, George Will advised Tim Pawlenty that now was the moment for him to make his move. On ABC’s This Week, Pawlenty did so. He got in the “let’s play chicken with the debt limit” car and headed it straight towards the cliff, joining the growing list of Tea-GOP presidential wannabes who should never be given a license to drive.

Pawlenty’s first response to Christiane Amanpour’s question whether we should raise the debt limit was a seemingly unqualified, “I don’t think we should raise the debt limit.”  He then followed with the usual rhetoric on spending.

“Really, not raise it,” she asked? Pawlenty replied by saying “there are serious people challenging the premise [that we have to  raise it],” then follwed with a duck: “we don’t really know what would happen.”  He then repeated that “serious people”  have “written thoughtfully” minimizing the risks.

(As in “we have top men working on this.”  “Who?”  “Top men.”)

Then Tim gave us this assurance:  We don’t need to worry about any impact on our international credit standing, because we can always pay foreign creditors with the revenues we have.   Are you listening, Wall Street? Pension funds?

So who are these “serious people” minimizing the risks?  In a previous post, I noted that the Tea-GOP Zombies were tapping right wing media/”think tank” hacks to invent reasons why we shouldn’t worry too much about risking a default on the national debt.  Their argument had evolved to note we’d have enough incoming revenues to pay interest on the debt, while failing to mention that meant something else would not be covered.  Tim didn’t mention that either, and Christiane did not think to ask what those other things might be.

Now Pawlenty is taking the “pay the bond holders first” argument one step further:  Pay the foreign bond holders first.

Sooner or later, everyone else who has to wait in line behind the Chinese and European banks is going to catch on that the Tea-GOP Zombies, including the supposedlly “moderate” Tim Pawlenty, are okay driving them off the cliff.   And they’re going to conclude that this entire Zombie party should not be given a driver’s license.

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John has been writing for Firedoglake since 2006 or so, on whatever interests him. He has a law degree, worked as legal counsel and energy policy adviser for a state energy agency for 20 years and then as a consultant on electricity systems and markets. He's now retired, living in Massachusetts.

You can follow John on twitter: @JohnChandley