Washington, Feb 12 IANS | 9 months ago

The US House of Representatives Tuesday approved a bill with no provisions attached to extend the limit on the federal government's borrowing authority.

The legislation, approved in a 221-201 vote, would suspend the debt ceiling until March 15, 2015, allowing the Treasury Department to issue new debt above the current $17.2 trillion cap, Xinhua reported.

The bill eliminates the threat of default and puts off debate on the issue till after the 2014 midterm elections.

It signifies a retreat from a long-held Republican strategy of seeking concessions in exchange for a debt-limit increase, delivering victory to US President Barack Obama who has demanded a debt limit hike without conditions.

House Speaker John Boehner told reporters Tuesday morning that he would advance a "clean" debt-limit bill to the House floor, abandoning a proposal circulated Monday which would have linked the debt limit increase with a reversal of military benefits cuts.

Without an increase in the statutory borrowing limit, the U.S. government would face the threat of a historic default that could wreak havoc in global financial markets and hurt economic recovery.

The Democratic-controlled Senate would hold a vote on the bill Wednesday. Congressional Democrats have long insisted the debt limit be raised with no strings attached.

(Posted on 12-02-2014)

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