WASHINGTON (CNN) - What would Ronald Reagan do? It's a question many Republicans often ask, but on Tuesday Democrats turned to the former president's words to argue he would raise the debt limit.
House Democrats released new video that features a Reagan radio address from September 1987 during which he called on Congress to raise the debt ceiling.
The video, which Democrats called "An Adult Moment," begins with a white screen showing an old-school radio microphone, then President Reagan's voice is heard while certain key words flash on the screen.
"Congress consistently brings the government to the edge of default before facing its responsibility, " Reagan says. "This brinkmanship threatens the holders of government bonds and those who rely on Social Security and veterans benefits. Interest rates would skyrocket, instability would occur in financial markets, and the federal deficit would soar. The United States has a special responsibility to itself and the world to meet its obligations. It means we have a well-earned reputation for reliability and credibility – two things that set us apart from much of the world."
Near the end of the 54-second video, an image of President Reagan is shown on the screen with the caption "That was an adult moment."
Democratic Caucus Chairman John Larson pointed out that Reagan raised the debt limit many times.
"This is defaulting on the nation's responsibility and could not be put more bluntly and more articulately than (when) Ronald Reagan laid it out in 1987," Larson said. "In fact, 17 times Ronald Reagan raised the debt ceiling and without the taking of any hostages. Yes, there were political disagreements as there always are, but at the end of the day the country voted bipartisanly to make sure you didn't put people on the brink."
It's not the first time Democrats have invoked the Gipper's name during the debt debate.
Over the weekend, President Barack Obama talked about Reagan in his own presidential radio address.
"We've worked together like that before," Obama said. "Ronald Reagan worked with (House Speaker) Tip O'Neill and Democrats to cut spending, raise revenues, and reform Social Security."