Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., a ranking member of the House Budget Committee, talks to “Viewpoint” host Eliot Spitzer about the possibility that Republicans will use the debt ceiling as leverage in the ongoing fiscal cliff crisis. Spitzer believes this may be the case if Republicans don’t achieve their goal of maintaining the Bush tax cuts for America’s wealthiest 2 percent.
Defaulting on our debt is “the economic equivalent of a nuclear weapon,” Van Hollen says. “I think the Republicans really are overplaying their hand if they think they’re going to get a lot of leverage out of this debt ceiling. … People remember that episode more than a year ago, and really, it backfired. So you’d have a situation where I think Republicans would look even worse.”