The president had been speaking for nearly an hour, and his 2013 State of the Union address did not seem to be ruffling feathers overmuch. "But," he said to himself, "That will soon change." After having covered his plans for our nation in regard to economics, tax policies, climate change, defense spending, foreign policy, gay rights, abortion rights, and election reform, President Obama continued:
"Now I'd like to address the next political battle we'll be facing here in Washington: the debt ceiling. Our economy will hit the present ceiling in late February or early March, and the Senate Minority Leader and the Speaker of the House have both made it abundantly clear that they're going to use the debt ceiling as an opportunity to extract spending cuts from almost every facet of the federal budget except for defense. I've stated for some time now that we're not going to have that fight anymore. The last time we had this debate, it wound up costing the American people the first credit downgrade we've ever had, and while that particular downgrade didn't turn out to be catastrophic, a second downgrade may very well lead us to places we really don't want to go.
So let me be clear: we're not going to have this fight. There will be no long, drawn-out negotiations. There will be no late-night last-minute desperate deal-brokering to avoid the first default in our nation's history. What's more, I'm taking the decision out of my own hands completely.
He turned to address the Republican senators and representatives who were seated on his left, "I'm leaving that particular decision up to the House of Representatives."
The president paused until the murmurs punctuated by shouts and not a few curses died down before he repeated himself,
I'm leaving the decision strictly up to the House of Representatives under the leadership of House Speaker John Boehner, and we will see what decision you will make. I have asked the Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to introduce a bill to raise the debt ceiling, and to keep the bill clean without anything at all added to it. Furthermore, I have signed an executive order, it's sitting right here in front of me, that states that the current president will not sign any bill into law raising the debt ceiling unless it's a clean bill without any amendments. Furthermore, if I were to sign such a bill, the executive order stipulates that the current president, that's me, remember, must resign within thirty days. As of now, I'm not allowed to sign anything but a clean bill.
Howls of protest erupted from the Republicans, while the Democrats were largely silent, shocked speechless that their president would put the nation's economy in the hands of the Tea Party-influenced Republicans in the house. Again, the president waited for the ruckus to die down and then continued, "So to those from the other side of the aisle, you wanted to be in charge, so I'm giving you the opportunity to make what is perhaps the most important decision of my presidency, without any input whatsoever from me. That's right, after this speech, I'm done with this subject. You'll either present me a clean bill to sign to raise the debt limit, or you will not. If you do not do so, then it will be your decision to force this nation into default. It's as simple as that."