UNITED STATES NEWS

What’s next on the debt ceiling: Selling the plan and making a deal into a law

May 27, 2023, 9:27 PM | Updated: May 28, 2023, 11:14 am

WASHINGTON (AP) —

After weeks of negotiations, President Joe Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy have announced an “ agreement in principle ” to raise the nation’s debt ceiling and avoid a potentially catastrophic default.

The sweeping legislation passed by the Republican-led House last month.

To reduce spending, as Republicans had insisted, the package includes a two-year budget deal that would hold spending flat for 2024 and impose limits for 2025. That’s in exchange for raising the debt limit for two years, until after the next election.

It also expands some work requirements for food-stamp recipients and tweaks an environmental law to try to streamline reviews to build new energy projects.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has said the United States could default on its debt obligations by June 5 if lawmakers do not act in time to raise the federal debt ceiling.

A look at what’s next as Congress rushes to pass an agreement:

FINALIZING THE DEAL

Speaking to reporters in the Capitol late Saturday, McCarthy said the bill has “historic reductions in spending, consequential reforms that will lift people out of poverty into the workforce and rein in government overreach. There are no new taxes and no new government programs.”

Biden told reporters at the White House on Sunday: “I’m going to call McCarthy now at 3 o’clock to make sure all the T’s are crossed and the I’s are dotted. I think we’re in good shape.”

House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries of New York said in a letter to Democratic colleagues that administration officials would brief House Democrats on the agreement at 5 p.m. One of the administration’s chief negotiators, presidential counselor Steve Ricchetti, was also making individual calls to Democratic lawmakers to build support, according to a House Democratic aide.

Biden said in a statement after the deal was announced that he strongly urged “both chambers to pass the agreement right away.”

SELLING THE BILL

To pass the bill, both McCarthy and Biden will now have to sell it to their respective parties. While both sides are expected to lose some votes, they have to make sure that the deal is popular enough to pass both chambers without a revolt on either side.

McCarthy held a call Saturday evening with the Republican caucus, fulfilling a promise he made to show the agreement to them before revealing the legislation to the public. He said he expects to release the text of the bill on Sunday afternoon.

McCarthy said in an interview on “Fox News Sunday” that the bill is less than 150 pages and the House would wait 72 hours before voting on it so it can be publicly reviewed. “This is worthy of the American people. I want them to read it. I want them to understand it,” he said.

The Republican speaker he expects a majority of Republicans to vote for it and a lot of Democrats as well because Biden was on board. Jeffries said on CBS’ “Face the Nation” that he expects “there will be Democratic support once we have the ability to be fully briefed by the White House, but I’m not going to predict what those numbers will ultimately look like.”

Reaction was mixed. Rep. Dan Bishop of North Carolina tweeted a vomit emoji, complaining that some Republicans on the call were praising the speaker for getting what he said is “almost zippo in exchange” for the debt ceiling hike.

South Dakota Rep. Dusty Johnson, an ally of McCarthy, told CNN’s “State of the Union” that “overwhelmingly, Republicans in this conference are going to support the deal. How could they not. It’s a fantastic deal.”

White House officials will give their own briefing to House Democrats on Sunday at 5 p.m., according to a House Democratic aide. McCarthy said he spoke to Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky on Saturday night and there will be a conference call with Republicans senators later Sunday.

CONGRESS RETURNS

Both the House and Senate are expected to return on Tuesday, after Memorial Day. McCarthy said the House will vote Wednesday, which would then send the bill to the Senate.

Once the bill reaches the Senate, where Democrats have the majority, the pace of action will largely depend on whether any senators try to hold up the bill, possibly with amendment votes. That could tie up the legislation for a few days.

Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York warned members Sunday that “due to the time it may take to process the legislation in the Senate without cooperation, Senators should prepare for potential Friday and weekend votes.”

Still, the Senate can move quickly when they have agreement from all 100 senators. The bill could be passed by the end of the week, with a quick Biden signature to make it law.

The White House was expected to brief Senate Democrats late Sunday afternoon, likely after the bill language has been released and members have had time to review the proposals.

If all goes according to McCarthy’s plan — and both chambers are able to pass the legislation — the potential crisis should be resolved by June 5, which is when the Treasury Department projects the U.S. would be at risk of default.

“This agreement is good news for the American people, because it prevents what could have been a catastrophic default and would have led to an economic recession, retirement accounts devastated, and millions of jobs lost,” Biden said in his Saturday evening statement.

___

Associated Press writers Farnoush Amiri, Lisa Mascaro, Seung Min Kim, Zeke Miller in Washington and Michelle L. Price in New York contributed to this report.

United States News

FILE - Deborah Moody, an administrative clerk at the Alaska Division of Elections office in Anchora...

Associated Press

Alaska election officials to recalculate signatures for ranked vote repeal measure after court order

JUNEAU, Alaska (AP) — A state court judge on Friday disqualified numerous booklets used to gather signatures for an initiative that aims to repeal Alaska’s ranked choice voting system and gave elections officials a deadline to determine if the measure still had sufficient signatures to qualify for the November ballot. The decision by Superior Court […]

5 hours ago

Associated Press

UN approves more transparent procedures for people and entities to get off its sanctions lists

UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The United Nations Security Council unanimously approved more transparent procedures Friday for the hundreds of individuals, companies and other entities who are subject to U.N. sanctions and want to get off the blacklists. The resolution, co-sponsored by Malta and the United States, also authorizes the establishment of a new informal working […]

6 hours ago

FILE - Rep. Shelia Jackson Lee, D-Texas, speaks during a House Judiciary Committee meeting, Dec. 13...

Associated Press

Longtime US Rep Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, who had pancreatic cancer, has died

Longtime U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee of Texas, who helped lead federal efforts to protect women from domestic violence and recognize Juneteenth as a national holiday, has died. She was 74. Lillie Conley, her chief of staff, confirmed Friday night that Jackson Lee, who had pancreatic cancer, had died. The Democrat had represented her Houston-based […]

6 hours ago

Stools line the bar at Elwood's Liquor and Tap on Thursday, July 18, 2024 in Milwaukee, Wis. This w...

Associated Press

Outside the RNC, small Milwaukee businesses and their regulars tried to salvage a sluggish week

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Jay Nelson was standing outside the convenience store he manages in downtown Milwaukee when one of his regular customers walked by on her daily stroll around the neighborhood. “I’ve been telling people to come and buy even just a bottle of wine,” she said, stretching out her arms. “I hope it helps.” […]

7 hours ago

Descendants of Nelson Bell, brothers Milford Fonza, front left, and Elmer Fonza, front right, surro...

Associated Press

In a California gold rush town, some Black families are fighting for land taken from their ancestors

COLOMA, Calif. (AP) — In a tiny town where the California gold rush began, Black families are seeking restitution for land that was taken from their ancestors to make way for a state park now frequented by fourth graders learning about the state’s history. Their efforts in Coloma, a town of around 300 people that’s […]

7 hours ago

Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich stands listening to the verdict in a glass cage of a ...

Associated Press

Russia convicts US journalist of spying in a trial widely seen as politically motivated

Wall Street Journal reporter Evan Gershkovich was convicted Friday of espionage and sentenced to 16 years in a maximum-security prison on charges that his employer and the U.S. government have rejected as fabricated.

7 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Sanderson Ford

3 storylines to get you revved up for the 2024 Arizona Cardinals

Arizona Cardinals training camp is just a couple weeks away starting on July 25, and Sanderson Ford is revved up and ready to go.

...

Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinic visits boost student training & community health

Going to a Midwestern University Clinic can help make you feel good in more ways than one.

...

COLLINS COMFORT MASTERS

Here are 5 things Arizona residents need to know about their HVAC system

It's warming back up in the Valley, which means it's time to think about your air conditioning system's preparedness for summer.

What’s next on the debt ceiling: Selling the plan and making a deal into a law