Rep. Jim Moran (D-Va.) is sponsoring legislation to eliminate the national debt ceiling.
This summer's debate over raising the debt ceiling caused the U.S. credit rating to be downgraded because S&P said there was too much uncertainty coming from politicians in Washington. Only one other western nation has a debt ceiling. Moran says the practice isn't needed in the U.S. and causes more harm than good.
"This summer we were on the brink of self-inflicted economic catastrophe," Moran says. "This must not be repeated. The uncertainty created by the impasse over the debt ceiling has already impacted our economy."
There's still a risk that Virginia and Maryland will have their credit scores downgraded this fall, which Moran says underscores the necessity for Congress to do away with the debt ceiling.
"If the ratings agencies will not give the highest rating to the federal government, then it does have effects upon the surrounding governments," he says. "Obviously, the Washington Metropolitan area is dependent upon the strength and the perceived strength of the federal government, and its willingness to pay its debts."
Republicans are vowing to use future debt ceiling debates to demand trillions of dollars in spending cuts. They say without the debt ceiling debate, Congress wouldn't have been forced to make drastic reductions in spending.