House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) said Thursday that President Joe Biden would be responsible for “any default” on the nation’s $31.3 trillion debt after he “ignored this debt crisis for more than 100 days.”
There are 9 days left for Democrats to meet the deadline, but since President Biden ignored this debt crisis for more than 100 days—make no mistake—any default would be the Biden Default. https://t.co/P5YOjE5PbC
— Kevin McCarthy (@SpeakerMcCarthy) May 23, 2023
“There are 9 days left for Democrats to meet the deadline, but since President Biden ignored this debt crisis for more than 100 days—make no mistake—any default would be the Biden Default,” McCarthy tweeted. It came soon after his office issued a press release emphasizing that Biden “refused” to negotiate with McCarthy over that time:
From the beginning, Speaker McCarthy and House Republicans have been very clear that Democrats’ addiction to spending led to soaring inflation, greater dependence on China, and record debt. Now, Washington must spend less.
Because he wasted months ignoring the crisis until it became a full-blown emergency, President Biden now has just 9 days to get serious and strike a responsible agreement to raise the debt limit immediately. Otherwise, he risks bumbling into the first default in American history.
The release features a timeline that highlights McCarthy’s numerous calls for Biden to engage in budget cut negotiations since January 12, days after he won the speaker’s gavel. Despite a February 1 meeting between McCarthy and Biden at the White House and the speaker’s repeated efforts to begin negotiations, the Biden Administration, for months, asserted that the debt ceiling should be raised “without conditions.”
On April 27, House Republicans passed the Limit, Save, Grow Act, which would raise the debt ceiling and, according to the Congressional Budget Office, save $4.8 trillion through the next decade. McCarthy saw the bill as a tool to leverage Biden and Democrats into negotiations, as Breitbart News noted, and it remains the only legislation on Capitol Hill that would raise the debt ceiling. However, Biden has said he would not sign it if it passed the Senate, an unlikely feat in and of itself.
On May 1, Biden finally requested a second meeting with McCarthy to discuss the debt ceiling, and a meeting materialized on May 9. However, as recently as March 12, White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre asserted there was “no negotiation to be had on the debt ceiling,” as the Wall Street Journal pointed out.
McCarthy’s office notes that it took more than a week after the meeting before “Biden finally acknowledge[d] debt limit negotiations” last Wednesday, as deputies for the two sides engaged in talks.
By Friday, Rep. Garret Graves (R-LA) said Republicans would “press pause” on negotiations with Biden’s team. As Breitbart News’s Sean Moran wrote, he “accused the Biden White House of not negotiating in good faith.”
Jean-Pierre issued a press release the next day asserting Republicans put forth an offer Friday night “that was a big step back.”
Talks resumed on Sunday, which preceded Mondays’s third meeting between McCarthy and Biden at the White House. Both men called the meeting “productive.”
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