Biden accuses Republicans of taking the economy “hostage” to the debt ceiling
The President of the United States, Joe Biden, accused Republican lawmakers on Wednesday of taking the economy “hostage” by conditioning suspension of the debt ceiling on agreeing to deep cuts in public spending.
They are doing what no political party in the nation’s history has done. “They are literally taking the economy hostage,” he said in a speech during a visit to suburban New York.
Biden expressed himself in this way a day after meeting with Republican House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, which closed without progress on a possible deal to avoid default on the national debt, which was already its $31.4 trillion limit. It was reached on January 19th, so the government is currently using the money in its reserves to pay off the debts it has contracted.
The Treasury estimates that those reserves will run out on June 1, at which time the United States will automatically default, the first in its history.
This, Biden insisted, would be devastating for the country’s economy, with a recession and millions of jobs lost, as well as for the rest of the world.
The White House has so far ruled out negotiating budget cuts to ease the debt ceiling hold, stressing that as a matter of responsibility, Republicans must ensure that the country can pay its creditors and that, at a later date, the accounts can be debated.
In this sense, Biden pointed out that under the Donald Trump government (2017-2021), Republicans supported raising the cap to three times despite the fact that that administration saw a massive increase in public debt.
On Republican budget demands, the president has insisted, they mean massive cuts to public programs that benefit middle-class families and veterans, massive layoffs of police officers and teachers, or tower closures. air control, among many others.
Meanwhile, he confirmed that the Republican Party is seeking to extend the tax cuts granted by Trump to companies and large fortunes.
According to some analysts, with Biden’s chosen location for this speech, the president has sought to pressure Republican lawmakers representing the generally moderate suburban area north of New York City to support raising the debt ceiling.
The district, meanwhile, is one of those that could be key from an electoral point of view: in the last elections, the Republicans here surprised with better results than expected and occupied several seats that contributed to giving them control of the House of Representatives. Representatives in Washington.
They have done so, by and large, by very narrow margins and Democrats are confident they will be able to take back many of these counties in 2024, when they aspire to regain a majority in the House of Representatives.
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