(Washington, DC)  --  In a major shift, House Republicans are now considering a short-term debt limit hike with no strings attached. 

The federal government faces the prospect of default if the nearly $17-trillion debt ceiling is not boosted by October 17th.  House Republicans had been insisting on tying any debt limit increase to further cuts in spending, a deal-breaker with Senate Democrats and the White House. 

President Obama has repeatedly insisted he will not negotiate over the debt ceiling, which he describes as paying bills already racked up.