President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris are set to hold a crucial meeting with Congressional leaders today at 3 pm in the White House to address the looming debt default crisis. The meeting comes one week after their initial gathering, which ended with significant differences still unresolved.
Despite the pressing issue at hand, President Biden is scheduled to depart for the Group of Seven summit in Japan on Wednesday morning, and he has reiterated his intention to stick to the planned schedule.
Republicans have proposed raising the borrowing limit in exchange for spending cuts, while Democrats, including President Biden, seek to increase the debt limit without any conditions attached. President Biden emphasizes that it is Congress’ responsibility to address the debt ceiling, while Republicans argue for compromise on spending between the Biden administration and Democrats in Congress.
With a mere two weeks remaining before the potentially catastrophic default, even if a bipartisan agreement is reached, Congress faces a tight deadline to pass legislation while both the House and Senate are in session.
Over the weekend, President Biden hinted at the possibility of accepting GOP demands to increase work requirements for specific social safety net programs, triggering concerns among Democrats in Congress. House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries and his team strongly opposed this during internal meetings on Monday. In response, President Biden took to Twitter to clarify his stance, unequivocally stating that he would not accept new work requirements for SNAP, effectively eliminating that potential compromise.
On Monday evening, Speaker McCarthy called for direct bilateral talks between President Biden and himself, expressing the desire for direct negotiations between the Republican Party and the White House to find a resolution to the impending debt default crisis.
“I just don’t see the progress happening,” McCarthy said.
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has issued warnings that the United States could potentially default on its debt and be unable to meet its financial obligations as early as June 1.
“We have learned from past debt limit impasses that waiting until the last minute to suspend or increase the debt limit can cause serious harm to business and consumer confidence, raise short-term borrowing costs for taxpayers, and negatively impact the credit rating of the United States. In fact, we have already seen Treasury’s borrowing costs increase substantially for securities maturing in early June. If Congress fails to increase the debt limit, it would cause severe hardship to American families, harm our global leadership position, and raise questions about our ability to defend our national security interests.
I continue to urge Congress to protect the full faith and credit of the United States by acting as soon as possible,” Yellen stated in her letter.
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