Treasury Secretary Jack Lew urged Congress on Monday to act quickly to raise the federal debt limit, saying he will run short of cash to pay the nation’s bills by the end of the month without additional borrowing authority.
Enforcement of the debt limit is suspended, but it will come back into force Friday under the terms of a deal lawmakers struck in the fall. That leaves Lew bumping up against the limit in tax-filing season, he said Monday, when he will have far less flexibility to juggle the books and ward off disaster.
“Unlike other recent periods when we have had to use extraordinary measures to continue financing the government, this time these measures will give us only a brief span of time,” Lew said during a speech at the Bipartisan Policy Center. “Given these realities, it is imperative that Congress move right away to increase our borrowing authority.”