U.S. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy addressed the nation Monday to talk about the national government's debt ceiling ahead of President Joe Biden's anticipated State of the Union address on Tuesday.
The U.S. government hit its statutory limit last month, and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen had to take steps to prevent a default from the U.S. government.
It is now time for the U.S. government to take action. Congress will have to pass a bill to raise or suspend the U.S. debt ceiling by early June or economic havoc could ensue around the world.
After a meeting last week with President Biden, House Speaker McCarthy said, “I believe you have to lift the debt ceiling, but you do not lift the debt ceiling without changing your behavior. So it’s got to be both.”
In a Monday address, McCarthy framed the issue as partly partisan saying, "Democrats in Congress spent your hard earned tax dollars, like the dollars were imaginary."
McCarthy accused Democrats of increasing discretionary spending in the last four years by $400 billion, calling it a 30% increase "in just four years."
"Now, President Biden wants Congress to raise the debt limit yet again, without a single sensible change to how government spends your hard earned money." McCarthy said in the Monday speech.
Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick, a Republican from Pennsylvania, said he is working on a bipartisan solution to the debt ceiling issue ahead of what is expected to be rounds of tough negotiations among lawmakers, the Hill reported.
Rep. Fitzpatrick is the head of the Problem Solvers Caucus that includes Rep. Josh Gottheimer, a Democrat from New Jersey.
When speaking about the negotiations between McCarthy and Biden, Fitzpatrick said, “We’re going to let them do their work."
He said, “We don’t want to undermine anybody. But what Josh and our group do together is, we don’t negotiate in public. We work everything out. We have a fail-safe option in the backdrop that will be ready to go to make sure that we get this job done.”