a “Did we just run into the 14th Amendment?”
Actually, no. The following excerpt from an article in thenewamerican.com discusses the 14th Amendment as it applies to debt and the debt ceiling:
But what does the 14th Amendment actually say? Only that the validity of the public debt, authorized by law, shall not be questioned, which would seem to preclude an outright, permanent default. But it does not authorize the president to take extraordinary measures to authorize more debt (and the inevitable taxes that must eventually be levied to pay it) without congressional approval. Indeed, the phrase “authorized by law” would suggest that Congress must be involved in the process.
In point of fact, if we are invoking the U.S. Constitution, we would do well to consider that the Founders also insisted, in Article 1, Section 7, that “all bills for raising revenue shall originate in the House of Representatives.” Why? Because the House, which represents the people (who ultimately pay the bills) directly, was to be trusted, appropriately, with the purse strings of government. It is perfectly appropriate that the House is now holding the Obama Administration to account for making significant cuts in government spending before authorizing the issuance of any more Treasury debt… Read the full article here.
And watch Senator Mike Lee (R) Utah in this video: Setting the Record Straight on the 14th Amendment