Schumer on debt ceiling battle: ‘I think we’ll win’
Lawmakers are on a crash course over how to deal with the debt limit in the coming weeks, and it’s a collision that Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) thinks Democrats will win.
Schumer has hammered House Republican for demanding spending cuts from Democrats and the White House in exchange for raising the debt limit, saying the GOP is “flirting with disaster.”
“The plan is to get our Republican colleagues in the House to understand they’re flirting with disaster and hurting the American people,” Schumer said in an interview with Politico. “And to let the American people understand that as well. And I think we’ll win.”
After the U.S. reached its technical borrowing limit of around $31.4 trillion earlier this month, lawmakers have until sometime in June to come together on a package to increase the debt ceiling. If not, the country would not be able to take on new debt to pay its bills, paving the way for a U.S. default.
The “disaster” that Schumer said Republicans were dancing around is the warnings from Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen that an American default would be disastrous for the economy, plunging the country into a spiraling recession.
But so far the warnings of economic disaster have not been enough to move lawmakers from their bargaining positions. Republicans want Democrats and the White House to commit to spending cuts before agreeing to raise the debt limit. Democrats want to raise the borrowing limit quickly, with no strings attached.
But there may be signs of movement in the negotiations, as Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said over the weekend that he was slated to meet with President Biden on Wednesday to talk about debt limit negotiations. It is the first meeting between the House Republican leader and the president on the issue.
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