President Obama should call Congress back from its recess to steady rattled markets, Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.) said Monday evening.
Bachmann, who's in the midst of waging a campaign for the Republican presidential nomination in Iowa, said that recalling lawmakers to Washington would send a strong signal to markets that lawmakers are serious about debt.
Bachmann said she would direct lawmakers to develop a plan to prevent default on U.S. debt, guarantee payments to members of the military and ensure seniors' current payments from Social Security and Medicare while reshaping those entitlement programs for future retirees.
The Tea Party congresswoman's demand is a bit of an unusual one, since returning to work in Washington would put a serious crimp in her campaigning for president, especially the week of the straw poll in Iowa. In the weeks before Congress broke for recess, Bachmann had to miss a good number of votes in order to campaign.
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Luckily for her, the White House has appeared resistant to invoking presidential powers and demanding that lawmakers return to work in Washington. Press secretary James Carney dodged questions about calling lawmakers back to work, making reference to getting down to business "when Congress does get back from its recess" in response to a question on the subject and mocking a followup inquiry.
The issue is whether lawmakers returning a few weeks early would demonstrate to U.S. markets, particularly the stock market, which suffered one of its worst one-day drops on Monday, that Washington is serious about addressing deficits and debt.
Bachmann called yesterday's sell-off "very bad, no good news" and a "day of reckoning" following a congressional fight in which she insisted on voting against any proposal to raise the debt ceiling.