Putting aside the debt ceiling drama currently playing out in Washington and the dire predictions of what would happen to the U.S. and the global economy if the ceiling isn’t raised by Aug. 2, Goldman Sachs’ chief U.S. economist said that even if all that doesn’t come to pass, the U.S. economy will still slow this year and next and puts the chances of a return to recession somewhere between 15% and 20%.

Earlier this year, Jan Hatzius forecast 2011 would see the economy grow at 4% and predicted the next recession was “years away.”

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