WASHINGTON Jan 11 Top Democratic Senators told
President Barack Obama that he must be ready to take "any lawful
steps" to ensure that the United States does not default on its
debt payments if Congress does not raise the debt ceiling on
"We believe you must be willing to take any lawful steps to
ensure that America does not break its promises and trigger a
global economic crisis -- without congressional approval, if
necessary," according to an excerpt of the letter to Obama that
was made available on Friday.
The White House has said it believes it does not have
constitutional authority to raise the debt ceiling unilaterally.