national debt

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national debt (countable and uncountable, plural national debts)

  1. (economics) Any money owed by the government of a nation.
    Synonyms: government debt, public debt, sovereign debt
    • 2017 March 1, Anthony Zurcher, “Trump addresses Congress: A kinder, gentler president”, in BBC News[1]:
      The only reference to the national debt - the reduction of which was once a top priority for Republicans of all stripes - was a passing mention of the subject during a litany of Barack Obama's economic failings.