Politics McConnell: Republicans 'united in opposition to raising the debt ceiling'
Democrats aim for maximum pressure on GOP over debt ceiling
Senate Democrats are widely expected to package legislation to raise the nation's debt ceiling with a government funding measure, an effort aimed at putting maximum pressure on Republicans to support raising the borrowing limit or risk blame for a government shutdown.Republicans have insisted they will not provide the 10 votes needed to break a filibuster and raise the debt ceiling, a position that has infuriated Democrats who argue rising debt is the result of policies advocated by both parties.
Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) on Tuesday said that Republicans will vote in unison to defeat any government funding bill that would also raise the nation's debt ceiling.
"Republicans are united in opposition to raising the debt ceiling," McConnell declared when asked after a GOP conference meeting whether any Republicans would vote for a funding stopgap that expands the federal government's borrowing authority, which is expected to be exhausted in October.
EXCLUSIVE: White House to go on offense against GOP on debt ceiling, Trump-era deficits
EXCLUSIVE: The White House is ending its hands-off approach to the ongoing debt ceiling standoff between Democratic and Republican leadership on Capitol Hill and is pressing Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell to stop "playing political games" with the economy.McConnell, despite pleas from House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, said in April that Republicans would not vote to raise or suspend the debt ceiling and that Democrats must include the measure in budget reconciliation.
McConnell explained that Republicans oppose raising the debt ceiling "not because it doesn't need to be done" but because doing so would pave the way for Democrats to pass a $3.5 trillion human infrastructure bill that would undo much of former President Trump's 2017 tax cut.
"The last time the debt ceiling was raised it was done on a bipartisan basis in conjunction with an overall [spending] caps agreement," he added.
"This year is unique ... I've never seen such an effort to expand the reach of the federal government like we've been confronted with this year," he said.
Other Republicans, including moderate Sens. Mitt Romney (Utah) and Rob Portman (Ohio), on Tuesday also ruled out voting for a government funding resolution that also expands the nation's borrowing authority.
Government departments and agencies need to be funded with a continuing resolution to avoid a government shutdown at month's end.
The last time there was a political standoff over the debt limit, in 2011, it resulted in a downgrade of the nation's credit rating, which sent stock markets into a tailspin.
Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) has said he plans to raise the debt ceiling under regular order, which means it needs at least 10 GOP votes to overcome a filibuster.
White House warns states of potential big cuts to Medicaid, school lunch and disaster relief programs if the US government defaults on its debt .
Mitch McConnell has dug in on refusing GOP help to lift debt ceiling, raising odds of a showdown that could cause a recession.In a new memo sent to state and local governments on Friday and obtained by Insider, the Biden administration laid out how a potential US default would ripple through at the state and local level. Programs that could face major reductions in federal aid include Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program, both measures that provide free health insurance to tens of millions of low-income Americans.