US national debt tops $20T for first time in history

The national debt surpassed $20 trillion Opens a New Window. for the first time in U.S. history on Friday.

According to data released Monday, the total national debt climbed about $318 billion to $20.162 trillion as of Friday, the same day President Donald Trump signed a bill suspending the debt ceiling and allowing the federal borrowing limit to extend until Dec. 8. The deal Trump signed, which also allocated more than $15 billion in disaster aid for Hurricane Harvey, was passed 316-90 in a House vote; all opposed to the measure were Republicans.

“Surpassing $20 trillion in debt is the latest indicator of our nation’s dire fiscal condition,” Michael A. Peterson, president and CEO of the Peter G. Peterson Foundation, a non-partisan organization dedicated to addressing America’s long-term fiscal challenges, said in a statement. “As a result of our inability to address our growing debt, we are now on pace to spend $6 trillion on interest alone over the next 10 years.”

The U.S. debt ceiling had been capped at around $19.84 trillion since March 15. The 2017 fiscal year budget expires at the end of September.