“It seems to be a political document,” said Schumer, the Senate Democrats’ Policy Committee chairman.
Schumer said Republicans are trying to use the plan to buck the responsibility of raising the debt ceiling and cut debt in order to protect tax breaks for the wealthy.
“It says what we care most about is two things. One, we want to throw the responsibility to the other side of raising the debt ceiling. It says that the Republican Party cares more about preserving tax breaks for the wealthy and corporate America than actually bringing down our debt,” he said.
McConnell's plan, presented to his conference at its weekly lunch Tuesday, would require President Obama to make three separate requests to raise the debt limit. Congress could pass resolutions of disapproval to block the requests, but those actions would require two-thirds' support in both chambers, to override expected presidential vetoes.
The proposal from the Senate Republican leader would require Obama to request three tranches ranging between $700 billion and $900 billion. Those requests would be made at the end of this month, later this fall and in the summer of 2012.
It also would require Obama to recommend a greater amount of spending cuts for every dollar he requests to raise the debt limit.
Schumer’s remarks, made from the floor, diverged with comments Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) made earlier, in which he said he was “heartened” by the plan. Majority Whip Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) also offered praise, calling it a "positive and thoughtful response" to the need to raise the debt ceiling.