Originally Posted by danpik
The OCPD is doing exactly what it should be doing in this case. Protecting the circuit from a dead short. GFCI's do not trip in the event of a dead short, thet trip when current leakage is detected. The circuitry in a GFCI monitors the incoming and outgoing current flow to see if it is the same. When the current flow back thru the neutral is lower than the hot then the device senses it and trips. In a dead short, the current flow on the neutral is the same as the hot so the GFCI will not see the event.
Finally, someone who understands how GFCI works. I've talked to licensed electricians who do not understand this.
This is why GFCIs do NOT protect you from electrocuting yourself if you touch the hot and neutral on the same device. No current is leaking to a "ground" outside of the circuit.
What the OP described is working exactly like it is supposed to. Assuming he is shorting the hot to the neutral, then the panel breaker should trip and the GFCI should not. This is actually a valid test I suppose, to make sure your GFCI is working correctly.
A lot of people also think a GFCI needs to be connected to ground to work correctly. Maybe GFCI is a bit of a misnomer because it confuses a lot of people. Instead of GFCI maybe it should be CLCI - Current Leak Circuit Interruptor. Or EGFCI - External Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter.