Jessica Yellin. Congratulations, your first question here.
Q Thank you, Mr. President.
THE PRESIDENT: No pressure. You’re going to do great. (Laughter.)
Q Thank you. Your administration has laid out four different dates by which you’ve said that the debt ceiling must be raised or the U.S. would face potential dire consequences. Three of those dates have come and gone and we haven’t faced financial calamity. Some of your critics have argued that these are then scare tactics to force a deal. So why should the American people believe that the August 2nd deadline is the final deadline by which a deal must be raised? And would you also spell out for us what you believe will happen if the debt ceiling is not raised by that date?
THE PRESIDENT: Jessica, let’s be clear. We haven’t given out four different dates. We have given out dates that are markers for us getting into trouble. It’s the equivalent of you’re driving down the street and the yellow light starts flashing. The yellow light is flashing. Now, it hasn’t been a red light yet. So what Tim Geithner has said is, technically speaking, we’re in a position now where we’re having to do a whole bunch of things to make sure that our bills are paid.
He’s not even on the road to salvation.
Great job, Jessica.