McCarthy holds out hope for debt ceiling deal after Biden meeting

Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) on Tuesday left a meeting on the debt ceiling with President Biden and other congressional leaders saying the structure of negotiations had improved and held out hope a deal would be possible in the coming days.

While the two sides are still working through key differences, McCarthy told reporters that Biden had “changed the scope” of who is involved in talks, appointing White House officials to work directly with members of the Speaker’s team to try and come to an agreement.

“So, the structure of how we negotiate has improved. So it now gives you a better opportunity, even though we only have a few days to get it done,” McCarthy told reporters after roughly an hourlong meeting.

McCarthy has said officials only have a few days to reach a deal in order to avoid default before June 1, which is the date the Treasury Department has warned the U.S. may default on its debts.

“It is possible to get a deal by the end of the week. It’s not that difficult to get to an agreement,” McCarthy said.

The Speaker’s rhetoric appeared more optimistic than just a week ago, when he left a meeting with Biden and other congressional leaders saying attendees had merely restated their existing positions. But in the week since, staff members have huddled for negotiations, which both sides have characterized as positive.

“If this was where we were in February, I’d be very optimistic,” McCarthy said, referring to the Feb. 1 meeting he had with Biden to start budget talks.

Democratic leaders also left the meeting with a more optimistic tone compared to last week. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) said that everyone in the room, including McCarthy, agreed that a bipartisan solution is needed to avoid default.

He added that he was glad to see that everyone “understood what a disaster default was” and said that the conversation was more cordial than last week, with “honest and real discussions” that were “respectful.” 

House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.) also described the conversation as “open,” “honest” and “cordial.”

The second meeting in the past eight days comes up against the June 1 deadline the Treasury Department determined would be the date the U.S. could default on trillions of dollars of debt, which could cause havoc on the financial system.

Biden is set to leave for Japan on Wednesday and will return to Washington on Sunday, cutting short his international trip to resume debt talks.

Descargo de responsabilidad: Este artículo puede requerir una suscripción.

Deja un comentario

es_MXEspañol de México