Senators Blackburn, Rick Scott Lead Colleagues in Reintroducing Full Faith and Credit Act to Address Federal Debt Crisis

February 7, 2023

U.S. Senators Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) and Rick Scott (R-Fla.) reintroduced the Full Faith and Credit Act to ensure the federal government prioritizes funding for our military, veterans and seniors should the Biden Administration refuse to exercise its existing authority to prioritize these expenses and prevent default.


The legislation would directly protect Tennessee, which is home Fort Campbell, Millington Naval Base, Arnold Air Force Base, and the Tennessee National Guard, as well as over 400,000 veterans


As of November 2022, Tennessee families were paying approximately $629 more each month due to inflation caused by the Biden administration’s federal spending.


Senator Blackburn has been a loud voice in the fight to get the federal government’s reckless spending under control. Blackburn, along with 23 of her colleagues, recently sent a letter to President Biden expressing opposition to a debt-ceiling hike without real structural spending reform that reduces deficit spending.


Blackburn and Scott were joined on the Full Faith and Credit Act by Senators Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Cynthia Lummis (R-Wyo.), Katie Britt (R-Ala.), Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Jim Risch (R-Idaho), and Ted Budd (R-N.C.).


Senator Marsha Blackburn said, “The federal government has an increasing appetite for the taxpayer’s hard-earned dollar. We are overtaxed, and the federal bureaucracy is overspent. With the U.S. debt now over $31 trillion and soaring inflation, we simply cannot continue down this path toward economic destruction. This bill is a critical step toward helping Washington gets its spending priorities in order and economically plan for the future — just like every family in America does.” 


Senator Rick Scott said, “The last two years have made crystal clear that the left, the big government crowd and even Wall Street have found a very clever way to keep America forever stuck in a vicious tax-and-spend cycle where spending always goes up, debt always goes up – and if you dare to disagree – they say you want a default. For them it is a false choice: embrace overspending and massive debt, or be the one who destroys the American economy. That is nonsense and a lie. While Democrats want to maintain the status quo where a default threat looms over Americans every time their reckless spending hits our debt ceiling, I’m fighting to eliminate the threat of default and protect the federal government’s core responsibilities to the American people even while the Biden administration refuses to acknowledge we are in a time of fiscal crisis.


“Since the Treasury refuses to do what it can and must, it is time to pass the Full Faith and Credit Act. This bill would require the government to fulfill critical payments to the debt to avoid default and full fiscal calamity while Democrats refuse to take accountability for their wasteful spending. It would require Congress to ACTUALLY address the debt ceiling crisis. It also ensures Americans depending on important programs like Social Security, Medicare, veteran benefits, as well as our service members, are not punished for Washington’s dysfunction. If Democrats reject this proposal, they are rejecting the protection of the full faith and credit of the United States and REJECTING a solution to the possibility of a default. It’s time for Washington to start living within its means, just like every family and business across the nation does, and preserve the American dream—this bill is a great start.”


Senator Mike Braun said, “D.C. must grow some political backbone and address our over-spending crisis. I support the Full Faith and Credit Act to ensure that our military, veterans, and seniors are not harmed by D.C.’s failure to address this spending crisis that’s bankrupting our country.”


Senator Cynthia Lummis said, “Our military men and women and those who rely on Social Security and Medicare should not have to face the consequences for Washington’s inaction on our nation’s debt. The Full Faith and Credit Act ensures that we fulfill our commitments to them. The people of Wyoming expect us to come to the table with real solutions to our spending problem in order to raise the debt ceiling and prevent a future debt ceiling crisis. My thanks to Senator Rick Scott for spearheading this effort.”


Senator Katie Britt said, “Our ballooning national debt is an economic and security crisis. We can’t continue to recklessly pile this burden on the backs of our children and our children’s children. The American people deserve accountability over wasteful spending, and we accomplish that by prioritizing taxpayer dollars in a responsive and responsible manner. It is crucial that we maintain the full faith and credit of the United States, meet our obligations to Social Security and Medicare beneficiaries, maintain a strong national defense, and support our incredible veterans and servicemembers. This legislation would do exactly that.”


Senator Ron Johnson said, “Government spending is out of control. As Congress continues to pass trillions of dollars in new spending and we approach the debt ceiling with no fiscal controls, Americans are feeling the cost of Washington’s reckless behavior. I am proud to reintroduce the Full Faith and Credit Act alongside Senator Scott, which will guarantee that the government does not default on its debt and prioritizes spending for the men and women in our military as well as those who depend on Social Security, Medicare, and veteran benefits.”


Senator Mike Lee said, “With $31 trillion in debt, it’s clear that Washington’s spending habits are out of control. The bipartisan venture of deficit spending doesn’t pit Democrats against Republicans, but Washington D.C. and Wall Street against everyone else. We cannot risk the full faith and credit of the United States because we refuse to rein in spending. I’m proud to cosponsor the Full Faith and Credit Act because I believe it’s necessary to protect our commitments to seniors, military servicemembers, and veterans while avoiding a default on the debt.” 


Senator Kevin Cramer said, “It’s past time the federal government enact responsible budget reforms. Partisan Democrats added trillions to our national debt and the bill is due. If they refuse to negotiate over the mess they created, Washington will have to cut back, in which case, our bill would direct the Treasury Department to prioritize critical funding for seniors, veterans, and service members.”


Senator Jim Risch said, “If Idahoans live within their means, the federal government should too. We need to break the cycle of flirting with default every time the debt ceiling is reached. The Full Faith and Credit Act is an important step in getting America’s fiscal house in order because it ensures essential payments, like providing for our armed services, veterans, and seniors are made regardless if the debt ceiling is not increased. Our grandkids and our grandkids’ grandkids will pay this debt — we must rein it in before it crushes another generation.”


Senator Ted Budd said, “Our country’s debt is unsustainable and unacceptable. As Congress wrestles with the tough choices we must make to improve our fiscal health, we must prioritize payments to our seniors, the military, and veterans. I’m proud to join Sen. Rick Scott’s bill to do just that.”


The Full Faith and Credit Act is endorsed by Club for Growth, Americans for Prosperity and FreedomWorks.


The Full Faith and Credit Act would:


  • Require the following to take priority over all other federally incurred obligations in the event that the federal debt reaches the debt ceiling:
    • The Department of the Treasury to pay the principal and interest on debt held by the public;
    • Social Security payments toward monthly Old Age, Survivors and Disability Insurance benefits under title II of the Social Security Act;
    • Pay and allowances for members of the Armed Forces on active duty and the United States Coast Guard;
    • Payment of compensation and pensions and medical services provided by the United States Department of Veterans Affairs; and Medicare programs.
  • Require the Secretary of the Treasury, if the Secretary determines that incoming revenue will not be sufficient to finance the priorities described above over the following two weeks, to:
    • Notify Congress of the expected revenue shortfall; and
    • Raise the debt limit by the amount necessary to cover the difference between incoming revenue and the revenue needed to finance such priorities on a two-week basis.
  • Prohibit such a debt limit increase from exceeding the difference between expected outlays for the listed priorities and expected revenue. 

Click here to view the bill.