President Biden meets congressional leaders for US debt ceiling talks as clock ticks down for default

As the clock ticks down the Democrats and Republicans have remained locked in a stalemate. House and Senate Republicans have repeatedly said they would not vote for the ‘clean’ debt-ceiling hike that President Biden has called for.

Edited By Anwesha Mitra
Updated10 May 2023, 01:54 AM IST
US President Joe Biden speaks during a meeting with US Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) (L), House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) (R), and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC, on May 9, 2023. Biden and Republican leaders met in hopes of breaking an impasse over the US debt limit. The lifting of the national debt ceiling  allows the government to pay for spending already incurred. (Photo by Brendan SMIALOWSKI / AFP)
US President Joe Biden speaks during a meeting with US Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) (L), House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-NY), Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) (R), and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington, DC, on May 9, 2023. Biden and Republican leaders met in hopes of breaking an impasse over the US debt limit. The lifting of the national debt ceiling allows the government to pay for spending already incurred. (Photo by Brendan SMIALOWSKI / AFP)(AFP)

As an US debt default looms increasingly closer, President Joe Biden met with Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and other congressional leaders at the White House on Tuesday afternoon. The closed-door talks come  amid warnings that the US could default exhaust its ability to meet all payment obligations by early June without action. Thus far, Republicans and Democrats have been unable to find common ground on the issue. 

Republicans hope to negotiate sweeping cuts to federal spending in exchange for allowing new borrowing to avoid default. Democrats - including Biden - have been loath to give way and the POTUS is likely to reinforce his stance when it comes to the country’s full faith and credit to be held “hostage” to negotiations. He is expected to affirm his willingness to hold talks on the budget only after default is no longer a threat.

While the meeting is not expected to produce anything close to a final agreement on raising the debt limit, will be closely scrutinized by global investors, US voters and Washington lawmakers. 

ALSO READ: What is the US debt ceiling? What happens if it misses the June 1 deadline?

The POTUS is also slated to travel to New York's Hudson Valley on Wednesday to once again pressure Republicans to pass a clean debt ceiling hike and highlight that a House Republican plan would cut veterans' health care visits, support staffs at schools and Meals on Wheels for seniors.

McCarthy, whose party holds only a slim majority in the House, wants to tie a vote on the debt ceiling to broad spending cuts the White House considers draconian. Earlier in the day, he had also rejected the possibility of a short-term debt-limit extension, calling for the issue to be solved “now”.  The White House also separately closed the door to a short-term solution today.

(With inputs from agencies)

 

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First Published:10 May 2023, 01:54 AM IST
HomeNewsworldPresident Biden meets congressional leaders for US debt ceiling talks as clock ticks down for default

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