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Friday, June 9, 2023

Biden and McCarthy to Meet Monday for Debt Ceiling Negotiations

Biden and McCarthy to Meet Monday for Debt Ceiling Negotiations – House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and President Biden are scheduled to convene on Monday to continue discussions on preventing a disastrous debt default with the approaching June 1 deadline. McCarthy mentioned having a “productive” conversation with President Biden following his return from the G-7 conference in Japan. 

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McCarthy expressed his desire for the negotiating teams to carefully review their respective stances on Sunday, enabling them to effectively communicate their positions to President Biden during Monday’s meeting. On Sunday, before 6 p.m., a team of White House negotiators, namely Steve Ricchetti, Shalanda Young, and Louisa Terrell, arrived at the Capitol for a meeting with Republican Representatives Garret Graves of Louisiana and Patrick McHenry of North Carolina. 

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The White House negotiators concluded their discussions at around 8:30 p.m. within the Speaker’s offices. However, no updates regarding the progress of the negotiations were provided by either side to reporters. Earlier Sunday, Mr. Biden said at the G-7 summit that Republican leaders need to “move their extreme positions” to achieve bipartisan consensus and characterized previous proposals as “unacceptable.”   

Representatives from the White House and the Speaker’s office met briefly Friday after stalling earlier in the day, but negotiations broke down and both sides left without a deal. On Saturday, McCarthy tweeted that the White House is “moving backward in negotiations,” while White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said what McCarthy’s team had submitted “was a big step back and contained a set of extreme partisan demands that could never pass both Houses of Congress.”

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In order to prioritize discussions with congressional leaders, President Biden has eliminated several planned stops from his trip. This decision comes in response to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen’s cautionary statement that the United States may face the possibility of being unable to meet its financial obligations and potentially defaulting on its debt by June 1.

“I think we can solve some of these problems if he understands what we’re looking at, but I’ve been very clear to him from the very beginning,” McCarthy said Sunday. “We have to spend less money than we spent last year.” McCarthy refrained from providing additional details regarding the result of his conversation with Mr. Biden, stating that “no agreements have been reached.”

The White House released a brief summary of the call, acknowledging McCarthy’s and Mr. Biden’s upcoming meeting on Monday. Before departing from Hiroshima, Japan, president Biden said he had “done my part” in negotiating with Republicans, adding “now it’s time for the other side to move their extreme positions because much of what they’ve already proposed is simply, quite frankly, unacceptable.” 

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Republicans are seeking to raise the nation’s borrowing limit in exchange for implementing spending reductions, whereas Democrats, including president Biden, aim to increase the debt ceiling without any prerequisites. Mr. Biden emphasizes that the responsibility of raising or suspending the debt ceiling lies with Congress, while Republicans argue that president Biden and Democrats in Capitol Hill must reach a compromise on expenditure.

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