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US lawmakers face challenges after debt deal

(Vatican Radio) US lawmakers reached a deal on Wednesday to raise the debt ceiling and fund the US government into next year. Under the terms of the deal, the US Treasury may borrow money to service already existing debt through February 7 of the coming year, and fund the government through January 15. The Director of the Rome office of the Acton Institute for the Study of Religion and Liberty, Kishore Jayabalan, told Vatican Radio the broader issues underlying the crisis remain in place. “The debt ceiling crisis was an extension of a policy disagreement among Republicans and Democrats,” he explained. Jayabalan went on to say, “Part of the Republican Party wanted to use Obamacare – which is President Obama’s healthcare reform package, which has been passed into law – as a tool to have a debate about the size of government and what the United States government should look like going forward.” The controversial health care reform legislation has faced many difficulties in its early stages of implementation. Parts of it are also facing court challenges on constitutional grounds. Listen to Kishore Jayabalan's extended conversation with Chris Altieri: RealAudioMP3