Democrats Scoff As McCarthy Calls Out Biden For Halting Debt Limit Negotiations
Michael Nagle/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The White House and senior Democratic lawmakers rebuked House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) after his speech about the debt ceiling and efforts from House Republicans to curb spending.

The debt ceiling, a policy established by Congress that prevents the federal government from spending beyond the predetermined national debt limit of $31.4 trillion, surpassed the threshold earlier this year. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned lawmakers that she was forced to implement “extraordinary measures” to fund federal agencies until early June, after which the government will default on obligations unless lawmakers suspend or raise the debt limit.

McCarthy said in remarks delivered on Monday morning that House Republicans would vote “in the coming weeks” on a bill to lift the debt ceiling into next year. He repeatedly asserted that President Joe Biden has been unwilling to negotiate on possible debt limit and spending deals after the two officials met in early February.

“The longer President Biden waits to be sensible, to find agreement, the more likely it becomes that his administration will bumble into the first default in our nation’s history,” McCarthy said at the New York Stock Exchange. “Let me be clear: a no-strings-attached debt limit increase cannot pass. But since the President continues to hide, House Republicans will take action.”

The framework mentioned by McCarthy would return expenditures to fiscal year 2022 levels and limit annual spending growth to 1% over the next decade. White House Deputy Press Secretary Andrew Bates countered in a statement that McCarthy is “engaging in dangerous economic hostage taking” and “breaking with the bipartisan norm” he followed under former President Donald Trump. “He again failed to clearly outline what House Republicans are proposing and will vote on, even as he referenced a vague, extreme MAGA wish list,” Bates added.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) likewise dismissed the speech from McCarthy. “Democrats want to avoid defaulting on our country’s debts,” he asserted. “Meanwhile, Speaker McCarthy continues to bumble us toward a catastrophic default that would cause the economy to crash, spike job loss, and raise costs for American families.”

Bates appears to have referenced the spending plan recently offered by members of the House Freedom Caucus, a bloc of conservative Republican lawmakers who said they would consider voting to raise the debt ceiling contingent upon acceptance of their framework. The White House, on the other hand, unveiled a budget proposal last month that would increase expenditures from $5.8 trillion to $6.9 trillion over the next fiscal year while reducing deficits by $3 trillion over the next decade through several tax hikes on businesses and wealthy individuals.

“In his unserious budget proposal, President Biden wants to spend more this year than the government did during the height of the pandemic,” McCarthy said in response to the White House framework. “Just think about that. House Republicans believe the opposite should happen: before we borrow another dime, we owe it to our children to save money everywhere.”

Business leaders and government officials have warned that a national debt default would likely cause a worldwide financial crisis. Republicans have countered that the national debt, which now approaches $31.7 trillion, constitutes a long-term and unsustainable risk to the country.

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The Daily Wire   >  Read   >  Democrats Scoff As McCarthy Calls Out Biden For Halting Debt Limit Negotiations