Democrats refuse to negotiate “responsible” spending reforms
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) called out Democrats on Thursday for refusing to negotiate with Republicans on “reasonable and responsible” spending reform amid the debt ceiling.
“My Democratic colleagues won’t say a word about runaway spending and flatly refuse to talk to Republicans about sensible and responsible reforms,” Manchin said in a speech on the Senate floor.
In February, the US debt ceiling reached 31.4 trillion dollars. The US Treasury has announced that it may take “extraordinary measures” to prevent the country from defaulting on its debt by June, sparking a rift between Republicans who want spending cuts to offset the ceiling hike and anti-austerity Democrats.
“What we hear is, ‘We have to have a clean debt ceiling.’ Yes, we will pay off our debt. We must atone for our past sins, but can’t we at least discuss how we got here so quickly?’ Manchin said.
Initially, White House press secretary Karin Jean-Pierre said the cap “definitely” had to be raised because Biden refused to negotiate with the GOP.
Biden proposed a scenario in which Republicans would try to cut Social Security and Medicare, and as an alternative, he suggested raising taxes to pay down the debt. However, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) has made it clear that these programs are not where Republicans want to cut them, and he and the president have met at the White House about it.
In his State of the Union address last month, Biden said that “some” Republicans want to cut Social Security, prompting Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene’s (R-GA) “Liar!” roused GOP members who shouted.
In a speech in Florida a few days later, Biden said he was open to talks with McCarthy on the upcoming budget cuts in early March.
“Why don’t we make our own budget, you write yours, I write mine, and our people sit down and compare. If we can compromise, decide where we can compromise,” Biden recalled speaking to the speaker.
Manchin also accused Republicans of “refusal to provide information” on Tuesday.
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