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The US Congress is in a race against time to pass an agreement to raise the public debt ceiling


Members of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives will begin consideration of the finance bill stemming from the agreement concluded on Saturday to raise the US debt ceiling in exchange for budget cuts.

Less than a week before the due date, the US Congress begins a race against time on Tuesday to discuss the agreement reached between President Joe Biden and Republican leader Kevin McCarthy and avoid a debt default that would have had global repercussions for the United States.

Members of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives are beginning to consider the finance bill emanating from the agreement concluded on Saturday to raise the US debt ceiling in return for budget cuts.

An important first meeting of the Laws Committee is scheduled for Tuesday afternoon, which is expected to give an indication of the prevailing trends at a time when a segment of conservative and progressive MPs opposes the settlement that was extracted over the weekend after marathon negotiations.

If no problems arise, Kevin McCarthy expects a vote in the House of Representatives Wednesday in plenary session, with the Democratic-majority Senate voting later on the settlement bill.

Joe Biden, the candidate for a second term in 2024, who is risking his political balance on this issue, continued Monday to consult in all directions to persuade the Democrats to agree, a White House official said.

The president expressed optimism that Congress would pass the bill this week. “I will never say I’m sure what Congress will do, but I feel good,” Biden told reporters before leaving the White House.

On Sunday evening, lawmakers called for passage of the law, which was the result of a settlement he personally negotiated with the Republican opposition.

“The agreement avoids the worst possible crisis: a default for the first time in the history of our country, an economic downturn, damage to pensions and the loss of millions of jobs,” he said.

Tight schedule

But time is running out for the United States, as the US Treasury said that Monday, June 5, is the date when the US government may run out of funds and thus be unable to pay its debts and bills, pensions and salaries of federal employees.

Such a catastrophic scenario would be unprecedented in the United States and would have repercussions at the global level, if it occurred, according to economists.

In its broad outlines, the agreement provides for raising the public debt ceiling of the United States for a period of two years, that is, until after the presidential elections in 2024. The current ceiling is set at $31,400 billion.

The agreement did not include the deep cuts Republicans want, although non-defense spending will remain virtually unchanged next year, increasing only nominally in 2025.

It also provides for a reduction of $ 10 billion in funds allocated to tax services to modernize and strengthen controls, which was a demand by Republicans, as well as to recover funds allocated to combat Covid-19 that have not yet been spent.

In addition, it will adopt new rules for accessing some federal aid programs.


Democratic and Republican leaders have expressed confidence that they will muster the votes needed to eventually pass the text.

Details of the settlement were revealed Sunday, giving members of Congress 72 hours to read in depth.

But a vote on the agreement is not a foregone conclusion, as the text faces stiff resistance from some members of Congress from both parties.

Conservative Republicans have already announced their opposition to the agreement, such as Representative Dan Bishop, who reprimanded McCarthy because, in his opinion, he “got almost nothing” in the negotiations.

Another Republican, Matt Rosendale, spoke of “an insult to the American people.”

On the left, progressive lawmakers have expressed skepticism, such as Ro Kanna, who said many Democrats opposed to budget cuts “don’t know yet” how to vote.

Merry C. Vega is a highly respected and accomplished news author. She began her career as a journalist, covering local news for a small-town newspaper. She quickly gained a reputation for her thorough reporting and ability to uncover the truth.

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