Should States Declare Bankruptcy? (with David Skeel)

David Skeel & Daniel Kane

October 04, 2020

This year's public-health crisis has ravaged state budgets across the country, as revenues plummet while spending explodes. For some states, this has dramatically worsened pre-existing fiscal problems caused by decades of mismanagement of pension obligations. Guest David Skeel argues that in order to help those states in particular, Congress should create the option of state-government bankruptcy, which current law does not allow.

David Skeel is the S. Samuel Arsht Professor of Corporate Law at the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School and the author of Debt’s Dominion: A History of Bankruptcy Law in America. David also served as a member of Puerto Rico’s Financial Oversight and Management Board, following the territory’s bankruptcy crisis in 2016. 

This podcast discusses themes from David’s essay in the Summer 2020 issue of National Affairs, “State Bankruptcy Revisited.”


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