Pawlenty: Pay 'outside creditors' before military if US defaults

Former Gov. Tim Pawlenty and Rep. Michele Bachmann, both Minnesotans and GOP presidential candidates, have shown very different priorities in the debt-ceiling debate.

On Friday, Pawlenty said that if a deal can't be reached "outside creditors" should be paid before the military in order to avoid default and make time to debate "structural change" in the budget.

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"You have to to take away the the false choice between a default to outside creditors and raising the debt ceiling or doing it incorrectly or unwisely," Pawlenty said in an interview on “Political Capital With Al Hunt” airing on Bloomberg Television this weekend. "Of course the outside creditors [should be paid first]...Then the military, and then the rest."

Earlier this week, Bachmann introduced a bill that would ensure military pay if debt limit is breached. “Don’t allow our military men and women to dangle over a fire,” Bachmann said of the legislation.

Pawlenty has said in the past that he does not support raising the debt ceiling and believes the government can avoid default without raising it.

Bachmann has said she won't raise the debt ceiling without spending cuts, and accused President Obama of using the Treasury Department's Aug. 2 deadline to scare the American people.

Obama said this week that he "cannot guarantee that [Social Security and military pay] checks go out on Aug. 3 if we haven't resolved this issue." 

Pawlenty criticized the length of the deficit debate on Friday, saying the problem should have been dealt with months ago. "Now they've got their backs up against the wall at the 11th hour," he said. "The president needs to stop lecturing everybody 24 hours and get the deal done."

Bachmann and Pawlenty also seem to align in their rejection of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell's (R-Ky.) fall-back proposal which would authorize the president to raise the debt ceiling in a three step process that allows for Republican disapproval in Congress. Pawlenty called the plan “a Band-Aid on a broken bone.”