American debt: Joe Biden remains “confident” despite “real differences” with the opposition

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US President Joe Biden remains “confident” about a favorable outcome of negotiations in Washington on raising the US debt ceiling, despite “real differences”, White House spokeswoman Karine said on Saturday. Jean Pierre. The threat of a default by the United States rose a notch on Friday, the Republicans having decreed a “pause” in the negotiations due to deep disagreements.

The race against time continues in the United States to avoid a debt default on June 1. Joe Biden remains “confident” about a favorable outcome of the negotiations in Washington on the raising of the American debt ceiling, assured, Saturday, May 20, the spokeswoman for the White House Karine Jean-Pierre.

There are still “real differences” between Democrats and Republicans on the subject but “the president is confident in the possibility of moving forward”, declared the spokeswoman in Hiroshima, where the American president is taking part in the summit of the G7. “I still think we will be able to avoid a default” of payment, Joe Biden assured journalists on the sidelines of the G7 summit on Saturday.

The threat of a US default escalated on Friday after a “pause” in debt ceiling talks between the White House and the Republican opposition due to deep disagreements. Negotiations then resumed, which makes us “optimistic”, added Karine Jean-Pierre on Saturday. “Discussions just ended a few moments ago” in Washington.

“(Joe Biden) is informed daily” of the state of the negotiations concerning the debt and this, “several times a day”, specified the spokesperson for the White House. An agreement will be found “if both sides negotiate in good faith”, she added.

“We need to take a break,” House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy said on Friday, responding to reporters in Congress, after abruptly leaving the negotiating table with Republican Representatives Garret Graves and Patrick McHenry.

Republicans are calling for budget cuts before giving a green light to raising the debt ceiling. The sticking point: the Republicans’ demand to cut federal spending, to bring it back to 2022 levels. That is, cut $130 billion in spending.

“We can’t spend more money next year,” said Kevin McCarthy.

A red line that the Democrats refuse to cross. The Biden administration has, for its part, pushed to extend the borrowing limit until 2025, according to US media citing officials involved in the talks. The Democrats want to believe that an agreement remains possible if the two parties agree not to obtain satisfaction on all the demands, according to a source close to the discussions.

“Hurry up”

And again, both sides blame each other.

“It’s high time for the White House to get serious. Time is running out,” tweeted Mitch McConnell, Senate Republican Minority Leader, accusing Joe Biden of waiting months before agreeing to negotiate with Kevin McCarthy.

Congressional Democrats, meanwhile, are expressing growing concern over demands from Republicans to impose tougher work requirements on recipients of certain welfare benefits.

“Republicans are threatening to crash our economy unless we cut Medicare, evict thousands of people from their public housing, and put nearly ONE MILLION Americans out of work,” lamented elected Democrat Nanette Barragan, in a tweet. And to add that “their plan puts politics before human beings”.

On Wall Street, the stock market, which was confident on Friday morning after the optimistic comments of the day before, turned red in the middle of the session. The Dow Jones index ended the day down 0.33%, and the Nasdaq 0.24%.

Joe Biden cut his Asia-Pacific tour short due to the US debt crisis. He must return to Washington on Sunday after the end of the Hiroshima summit. The American president had expressed, Thursday, his hope to complete an agreement in principle with the Republican opposition. Kevin McCarthy had expressed optimism that a bill could be presented by next week, but he had indicated that it would take an agreement in principle by Sunday or Monday.

Republicans in the House of Representatives voted on April 26 a bill providing for an unprecedented cut in public spending in exchange for a suspension of the debt ceiling until the end of March 2024, paving the way for another crisis of debt in the midst of the presidential election campaign.

With AFP

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