Parties assess debt options as time runs short

July 17, 2011 - 3:44 AM
Obama Debt Showdown

President Barack Obama walks away from the podium after a press conference in the Brady Briefing Room of the White House in Washington, Friday, July 15, 2011. (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Congressional leaders and the Obama administration are weighing their options as time closes in on the deadline for raising the nation's debt ceiling.

The White House has left open the possibility of reconvening a meeting of congressional leaders and President Barack Obama.

White House and congressional and aides will continue discussions Sunday as Congress moves on two tracks to find a solution for increasing the nation's borrowing authority while reducing long-term deficits.

The government will exceed the current $14.3 trillion debt ceiling on Aug. 2, after which it could default of its obligations.

The consequences could be far-reaching. Interest rates could rise on mortgages and car loans, and Social Security checks stop. World financial markets may be thrown into turmoil.