Biden Says Republican Threats Over Debt Ceiling Are ‘Dangerous’ With ‘Enormous Implications’

Emel Akan
By Emel Akan
May 11, 2023Politics

President Joe Biden extended his attacks on Republicans in a speech in New York on May 10, calling their threats over the debt ceiling “dangerous” and meaningless.

A day after a high-stakes meeting with congressional leaders, Biden delivered a speech at SUNY Westchester Community College in Valhalla, New York, emphasizing the importance of raising the debt ceiling immediately and without conditions.

“Republican threats are dangerous, and they make no sense,” he said.

The president met with congressional leaders on May 9, ending a three-month standoff between the White House and Congress over the debt ceiling, which had threatened a default on the nation’s debt commitments. Biden called his meeting with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) and other congressional leaders at the White House “productive.” However, the leaders made little tangible progress toward averting a default.

The leaders decided to reschedule their meeting for May 12, with each side’s personnel continuing to meet daily to discuss potential solutions.

Biden told the crowd in New York that the debate over the debt ceiling has “enormous implications for the American economy, and quite frankly, for the world economy.”

“This isn’t just a theoretical debate going on in Washington,” he said, accusing McCarthy of refusing to rule out defaulting on the debt.

“If we default on our debt, the whole world is in trouble. This is a manufactured crisis. America is the strongest economy in the world. And we should be cutting spending and lowering the deficit without a needless crisis in a responsible way.”

McCarthy, on the other hand, has frequently said Republicans won’t allow the country to default on a payment. He has said that the purpose of the debate is to force a conversation on what he considered excessive government spending.

After the meeting, he criticized Biden for ignoring the crisis for 97 days and failing to come to the table to negotiate spending cuts. He told reporters that he saw no “new movement” during the meeting and that the United States now has only two weeks left to avert the crisis.

When the U.S. statutory borrowing limit of $31.4 trillion was reached in January, McCarthy insisted that no increase would be authorized unless Congress agreed to control future spending.

Biden declined to negotiate, either on the debt ceiling or cuts to federal spending, putting the responsibility on McCarthy to propose a plan for budget cuts. The situation changed on April 26, when Republicans in the House narrowly passed the Limit, Save, Grow Act along party lines.

The Republicans’ 320-page bill seeks to restore discretionary spending to 2022 levels, limit spending growth to 1 percent per year, and raise the debt ceiling by $1.5 trillion, or through March 2024.

However, the White House dismissed the GOP proposal, accusing House Republicans of proposing “harmful cuts to veterans’ care, public safety, education, and more.”

According to a poll conducted by the Associated Press and the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago in March, 60 percent of Americans believe that the government spends too much money. The percentage of people who think Washington spends too much was highest among Republicans at 88 percent, followed by about 60 percent of independents and only 34 percent of Democrats.

An April poll by Echelon Insights shows that 74 percent of voters, including most Democrats, agreed with the statement, “President Biden should agree to negotiations and try to find common ground around the debt ceiling, including some reductions in government spending.”

Lawrence Wilson and Samantha Flom contributed to this report.

From The Epoch Times

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