'Running out of time': McConnell tells Biden to negotiate over debt ceiling

 May 10, 2023

Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) urged President Biden to compromise with Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) in the debt ceiling fight, saying time is "running out" to avert a default.

For months, Biden has stalwartly insisted on a debt ceiling increase with no strings attached, but McConnell said Biden is the one man with the power to end the stalemate.

"This can only be solved by the one person in America who can sign something into law and by the majority of the opposite party, in divided government," McConnell said. "Hopefully that's the direction in which we were headed now because we're running out of time."

McConnell's warning to Biden

Biden and his allies have repeatedly accused Republicans of pushing the country to the brink of default by insisting on draconian cuts to popular social programs, but McCarthy has said Congress has a responsibility to rein in reckless spending.

“I've done everything in my power to make sure it will not default. We have passed a bill that raised the debt limit," he said, emerging from stalemated talks Tuesday.

"Now, I haven't seen that in the Senate,” he added. “So, I don’t know."

The White House was blindsided when, after taunting McCarthy to lay out a plan, the Speaker managed to whip Republicans behind a deal.

Democrats have repeatedly said that Americans have a collective responsibility to pay debts that took decades to accumulate, with Biden insisting America is not a "deadbeat nation." Despite frequently posturing as a budget hawk, Biden has raised the debt by nearly $4 trillion.

Biden doubles down

Biden continued to double down on his truculent stance at a campaign stop in New York Wednesday, where he accused McCarthy and "MAGA Republicans" of pushing the economy to the brink.

"They have a speaker who has his job because he yielded to the, quote, 'MAGA' element of the party," he said.

On the other hand, he said he was "pleased" with McConnell's prediction that a default will not happen.

"I was pleased but not surprised by the Republican leader in the United States Senate, McConnell, who said after the meeting in the White House, and he went to the press, he said, the United States is not going to default," Biden said. "It never has and it never will."

Biden, a so-called "moderate," is also threatening to go around Congress altogether by invoking an obscure clause of the 14th Amendment.

" A free people [claim] their rights, as derived from the laws of nature."
Thomas Jefferson
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