Biden and McCarthy Discuss Debt Limit

Kevin McCarthy Gets Uncomfortable After Being Asked Why He's Struggling

( – President Joe Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy were scheduled on February 1 to discuss the national debt crisis and debt limit process moving forward, The New York Times reported.

The scheduled meeting is the first between the president and speaker since Republicans took the lead as the majority of the House, following the Congressional Elections of 2022.

The meeting comes as Republicans and Democrats “exchange barbs” over the process moving forward.

McCarthy explained that the U.S. has “five months” to deal with the debt ceiling “in an adult way.” The speaker argued that he feels that Americans believe that there are ways to cut costs across the government spending.

The United States reached the national debt limit on January 19, hitting a debt ceiling of approximately $32T, the Treasury Department announced. The debt ceiling refers to the maximum dollar limit the U.S. government can borrow.

When the debt ceiling was reached, the Treasury Department announced it would need to take “extraordinary measures” to keep the government from defaulting on its bills.

Since the announcement, bipartisan heat has ramped up. President Biden and Speaker McCarthy reportedly “blamed each other” for the impasse in moving the discussion forward.

The meeting was “closed” to the press, meaning that reporters were not permitted to attend.

Political speculation has surrounded the current debt ceiling debate. Analysts recall previous showdowns over the U.S. debt levels, using them to illustrate what can be expected from the battle in 2023, Vox media reported. Analysts said that Republicans have taken different and sometimes “contradictory” lessons from the previous debt crises.

Republicans approach the debt crisis from a payments prioritization angle. This means that Republicans aim to lower the debt burden by prioritizing paying off certain government debts while withholding funds from other agencies.

Democrats have strongly disagreed with this policy, proposing instead that the debt ceiling dollar amount should be abolished. This means that Democrats would approach government spending on an “as per needed” basis, where the government can borrow money without limit for its needs.

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