President Barack Obama gave the last press conference of his first term Monday, focusing on applying pressure to the GOP in the latest debt ceiling fight. TheBlaze reported this morning:

President Barack Obama during a surprise press conference Monday explained that raising the debt ceiling “does not authorize Congress to spend more” but merely allows “America to pay its bills.”

“We’re not a deadbeat nation,” the president stressed. “Congress authorizes us to pay our bills.”

The president also said that if Congress wants to give him the power to raise debt ceiling, “I’m happy to take it.”

He said Congress has two choices: Either raise the debt ceiling or give him the authority to do so. Either way, the president seemed to say, the limit will be increased.

“I will not have that conversation with a gun at the head of the American people,” the president said, referring to his commitment to avoid another debt ceiling fight. “We have to break the habit of negotiating through crisis over and over again.”

“[Republican leaders] will not collect a ransom in exchange for not crashing the American economy,” he added. “The full faith and credit of the United States of America is not a bargaining chip.”

The toughly worded remarks came following a widely read report from POLITICO Monday morning that House Republicans are seriously considering allowing the nation to default or shut down the government as a means to force Obama to cut spending by the end of March.

On ‘Real News’ Monday the panel discussed how serious these reports about GOP threats could be, why the GOP would actually go that far, and the motivations behind the president’s press conference.

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