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As workers prepare the Capitol for Monday's inaugural ceremony, there's word that Congress might not get into another battle over the debt ceiling. Kevin Dietsch /UPI /Landov hide caption

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Kevin Dietsch /UPI /Landov

You'd need a lot of these — think in terms of railroad cars to haul them — to have $1 trillion. Shannon Stapleton /Reuters /Landov hide caption

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Shannon Stapleton /Reuters /Landov
Phil Dokas/Flickr

Episode 273: When The U.S. Paid Off The Entire National Debt

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Standard & Poor's downgrade of the U.S. credit rating Friday will play a role in President Obama's political future. Carolyn Kaster/AP hide caption

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Carolyn Kaster/AP