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Tipsheet

Kevin McCarthy Plans to Meet With Biden to Discuss the Debt Limit

AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif) said that he plans to meet with President Joe Biden on Wednesday to discuss raising the federal debt limit while controlling government spending. 

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During an interview with CBS’s “Face the Nation,” McCarthy brushed off the idea that the U.S. would default on its debt. 

“We’re not going to default,” McCarthy said, adding “this won’t come to fruition until sometime in June.”

He aimed his target at Democrats calling them out for wanting to raise the debt ceiling. 

“There will not be a default,” McCarthy continued. “But what is really irresponsible is what the Democrats are doing right now, saying we just raise the limit.”

The Republican also said that any cuts to Social Security and Medicare would be “off the table” during negotiations with Biden. 

However, McCarthy said that Republicans are willing to “strengthen” the costly retirement and health benefit programs for seniors, which the Biden Administration claimed was just another way of saying they plan to cut the programs. 

“I know the president said he didn't want to have any discussions" on cuts, McCarthy said, adding “I want to find a reasonable and a responsible way that we can lift the debt ceiling (and) take control of this runaway spending.”

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Earlier this month, the U.S. hit its borrowing limit of $31.4 trillion, however, McCarthy promised that the Treasury would be able to pay its bills until June. This would raise the biggest threat of default since a debt ceiling standoff in 2011.

Democrats and Republicans are at crossroads with one another, each demanding a separate thing. 

Republicans want the White House to commit to spending cuts before an agreement on the borrowing limit and the Democrats want to raise the debt ceiling with no strings attached. 

When asked if he would support a short-term extension of the debt limit until September, which several lawmakers argue would buy time to pass spending bills, McCarthy said “I don't want to sit and negotiate here. I'd rather sit down with the president and let's have those discussions."

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