House to vote to prioritize US debt payments

4:08 AM, May 9, 2013   |    comments
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By ANDREW TAYLOR / Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) - The Republican-controlled House is moving to put U.S. bondholders and people on Social Security at the front of the line to be paid if the government hits its borrowing limit and is unable to meet all its obligations.

The idea is to lessen the consequences of a U.S. default on its obligations if Congress and President Barack Obama can't find a way to lift the government's so-called debt limit later this year, in hopes of salvaging the government's credit rating and ability to borrow to pay its bills.

But Democrats said the legislation would guarantee a downgrade of the debt by suggesting the nation would be willing to pay some of its bills and not others. They've dubbed it the "Pay China First Act."

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