McConnell warns Biden he won't help raise debt ceiling next time

WASHINGTON – A day after lifting his party’s blockade and authorizing action to temporarily raise the federal debt ceiling, Republican l...


WASHINGTON – A day after lifting his party’s blockade and authorizing action to temporarily raise the federal debt ceiling, Republican leader Sen. Mitch McConnell on Friday warned President Biden that he did not have the intends to do so again, rekindling the threat of a first-ever federal default in December.

In a phone call with Mr Biden, Mr McConnell, who worked to muster the votes needed to break his own party’s filibuster against raising the debt ceiling – and voted himself – even to do so – said Democrats shouldn’t expect such help in the future, according to a Republican Senate adviser briefed on the conversation.

“I will not participate in any future effort to mitigate the consequences of Democratic mismanagement,” McConnell wrote. in a scathing letter that the aide said he reaffirmed what he told the president on the call. “Your Capitol lieutenants now have the time they claimed they lacked to settle the debt ceiling.”

The Senate passed a bill Thursday to lift the legal limit on federal borrowing of $ 480 billion, which the Treasury Department said would last until at least Dec. 3. Republicans opposed it en masse, but 11 of them, including Mr McConnell, broke ranks to provide the 60 votes needed to move it past an obstruction.

The measure is expected to be approved by the House next week, days before the Oct. 18 deadline, when the Treasury Department said the government would no longer be able to borrow to fund its obligations under the current law.

Mr McConnell has been the subject of fierce criticism from former President Donald J. Trump and some of his Republican colleagues for agreeing to allow the debt ceiling increase vote after he insisted for weeks about the fact that his party would never do it. He did so under mounting pressure from an impending government default and as Democrats rallied around the idea of ​​changing the filibuster rules to allow them to unilaterally increase the borrowing limit.

The letter, which the aide said he sent to all Republican senators, seemed intended at least in part to appease the anger of his colleagues.

Mr McConnell insisted Democrats use a complex and obscure budget process known as reconciliation to increase the debt limit, which would protect it from obstruction and allow it to be adopted without any Republican vote. Democrats, who are already using this process to push forward a sprawling, multibillion-dollar domestic policy agenda, refused, arguing it would take too long and be too cumbersome.

The Republican leader argued that by allowing the short-term increase to move forward this week, he was calling the Democrats bluff, giving them enough time to use reconciliation to adopt a longer solution. term.

But several Republicans still balked and party leaders were forced to spend hours looking for votes. It was a tricky turn for Republicans, who had hoped to use the debt limit drama to score political points against Democrats, but ultimately became bitterly divided.

“I don’t understand why we’re bending here,” South Carolina Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said Thursday. “It’s just a mistake.”

Democrats have pointed to Mr McConnell’s decision as evidence that Republicans could – and should – at least allow them to increase the debt limit through normal procedures.

In a speech Thursday that angered many Republicans, Majority Leader Senator Chuck Schumer of New York declared victory.

“Today’s vote is positive proof that the debt limit can be tackled without going through a process of reconciliation – just as Democrats have been saying for months,” Schumer said. “The solution is for Republicans to join us in raising the debt ceiling or stand aside and let Democrats fix the debt ceiling themselves.”

Mr McConnell seized on Mr Schumer’s comments in his letter, calling it “partisan, angry and corrosive” speech and yet another reason to withhold Republican votes in the months to come.

“This childish behavior only further alienated the Republican members who helped facilitate this patch in the short term,” Mr. McConnell wrote. “It poisoned the well even more. “

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Newsrust - US Top News: McConnell warns Biden he won't help raise debt ceiling next time
McConnell warns Biden he won't help raise debt ceiling next time
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