The most recent debt ceiling crisis, when the debt ceiling was at somewhere under $17 trillion, led to the mechanism being temporarily suspended, as the US government continues to borrow money to cover its spending. Congress may be on the verge of passing a new spending deal that rolls back some of the sequester's attempts to stymie spending, but the White House isn't interested in talking about the debt ceiling.
The White House says President Obama has not changed his position: He will not negotiate raising the debt ceiling next year.
White House spokesman Jay Carney said Monday he hopes Republicans will not make demands "when it comes to the full faith and credit of the United States."
Paul Ryan, who helped negotiate the latest spending deal, which passed the House overwhelmingly, claims he wants to keep the door open to extracting concessions on the debt limit when it is unsuspended next year.