A top congressional aide tells Huffington Post a “nightmare scenario” — where the federal government could wind up hitting the debt ceiling at the height of the presidential campaign — is definitely possible.
“The Treasury Department is now contemplating the prospect of invoking “extraordinary measures” to keep the government funded through November. Barring a major economic shock — a financial meltdown in Europe, for instance — the emergency measures should be enough to get the federal government past the election. But even under a rosy scenario, the next Congress will be forced to raise the debt ceiling as one of its first orders of business in 2013, if the lame duck outgoing body doesn’t do it. And if the Treasury does have to invoke ‘extraordinary measures’ before the election, it’s easy to imagine a re-run of last year’s political circus, magnified many times over.”