Analysts Ask: Is Congress Playing Chicken?

( – Political analysts have asked whether Congress is playing a game of “chicken” as the national debt crisis creeps toward default, the BBC reported. As early as June, the U.S. federal government could reach the cap of its legal national debt.

Criticisms centered around the willingness to negotiate on either side. Left-leaning political commentators questioned whether the Republican caucus in Congress was willing to raise the debt ceiling to avoid default, the editorial board of The New York Times wrote.

On May 9, President Joe Biden and members of Congress met to discuss raising the national debt ceiling. The president has refused to negotiate with Republicans on raising the debt ceiling as, in his view, that is not negotiable. However, he has expressed some willingness to negotiate terms of the national budget with Republicans, who have proposed a bill to put restrictions on national spending, and to begin to pay down the government’s debts.

The national debt ceiling was suspended in 2020 during the national response to the pandemic, BBC reported. Due to the effort to contain the pandemic, the national debt spiked exponentially, putting a significant burden on the national debt, BBC reported, citing a data graph that explained that the U.S. had risen gradually over time “regardless” of administration.

As the debt ceiling debates continue, political analysts have criticized the approach in Congress from both sides of the political aisle. Andrew Prokop, a senior political correspondent at Vox, explained that the President’s “no negotiations” approach to the debt ceiling crisis is becoming “increasingly untenable,” saying that the political showdown Biden has had with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy and the Republican members of Congress has not gone according to Biden’s plan. The strategy had been that, as the national crisis drew nearer, the stress on banks and public fears would force Republicans to act.

However, Prokop explained, Republicans instead rallied around a plan that, although Democrats find it extreme, may be seen as an opening bid for negotiation.

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