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President Joe Biden and Speaker Kevin McCarthy postponed their meeting on the debt ceiling set for today as their aides continue negotiations toward avoiding a catastrophic US default.
The delay signals that staff-level talks on energy permitting reform and government spending have yielded progress, according to people familiar with the situation. McCarthy (R-Calif.) said Biden planned to meet with him and other congressional leaders next week, though neither side specified a date.
The speaker told reporters at the Capitol that the leaders agreed it would be “more productive” for staff to proceed with their discussions. Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) also said he believed talks “are moving along.”
White House congressional liaison Louisa Terrell met behind closed doors with McCarthy chief of staff Dan Meyer and other aides for more than two hours yesterday afternoon.
Yet even as both sides touted progress in private talks, McCarthy — who must pacify restive conservatives who demand deep budget cuts — sharply criticized Democrats.
“President Biden and Senator Schumer are stuck on ‘no.’ They have no plan, no proposed savings and no clue,” McCarthy told reporters as news of the meeting delay broke. “Apparently, President Biden doesn’t want to deal. He wants to default.”
An agreement on spending could clear the way for a deal. The spending discussions are also focusing on clawing back unspent Covid-19 funds and capping spending in the upcoming federal fiscal year beginning Oct. 1, said Rep. Garret Graves (R-La.),a key adviser to McCarthy in the negotiations. The White House wants a short-term caps deal, while Republicans want to cap discretionary spending for 10 years, he added. Read the full story from Justin Sink, Erik Wasson and Billy House.
The Treasury Department has warned that the US could default on payments as soon as June 1 if lawmakers are unable to strike an agreement to raise the debt ceiling. Doing so would reverberate throughout the economy, economists have warned, projecting increased credit costs and unemployment.
In an interview with Bloomberg Television, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said the only good outcome in the current debt standoff is for Congress to raise the ceiling. “If Congress fails to do that, it really impairs our credit rating,” she added. Christopher Condon recaps her remarks from the sidelines of a G-7 gathering of finance officials in Niigata, Japan.
Streamlining federal permitting for energy and infrastructure projects could end up tied to a deal between Capitol Hill and the White House on raising the debt ceiling, House Republicans close to McCarthy say. Read more
- Biden holds a meeting with President Pedro Sanchez of Spain at 2 p.m. at the White House
- White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre and Infrastructure Implementation Coordinator Mitch Landrieu hold a 1 p.m. briefing
- The House and Senate return Monday
More From the Hill
House Republicans passed an aggressive but symbolic border security and immigration package following months of negotiations and a series of last-minute obstacles.
The Senate will vote next week on legislation repealing D.C. law that changed the capital city’s police practices, according to a spokesperson for Sen. J.D. Vance (R-Ohio), who introduced companion legislation yesterday.
The Senate Judiciary Committee advanced a bill that would combat the spread of child sex abuse material online amid a bipartisan push to protect kids’ safety and privacy on social media.
Senate Democrats are considering bringing up on a number of gun safety bills in the aftermath of the mass shooting at a Texas outlet mall as they look for ways to put Republicans on the record on the contentious issue before the 2024 election.
The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee plans to mark up several supply chain-focused bills at the end of this month, Chair Sam Graves (R-Mo.) said in a brief interview.
Congress is responding in rare bipartisan fashion to calls from businesses to reform the country’s workforce development system to help address the tight labor market.
Politics, Probes and 2024
Donald Trump is appealing the verdict of a New York jury that found him liable for sexually abusing and defaming New York author E. Jean Carroll and awarded her $5 million in damages.
CNN’s town hall with Trump drew an audience of 3.12 million viewers on Wednesday night, the network said.
A day after Rep. George Santos (R-N.Y.) pleaded not guilty to a 13-count federal indictment on Long Island, New York, the embattled congressman resolved claims that he used a stolen checkbook to buy $1,300 worth of shoes and clothing in Rio de Janeiro state in 2008.
Clashes in Texas, Mississippi, Georgia and other states reflect a widening power struggle between Republican state lawmakers and Democratic city prosecutors that has been turbocharged by concerns about criminal justice reform, progressive politics, urban crime and the legal spotlight on hot-button issues like abortion and gender-affirming care.
What Else We’re Reading
National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan sat down with China’s top diplomat for two days of what the White House called “substantive and constructive” meetings, a sign that the sides are working to ease strains that led to a breakdown in even the most routine communication.
US Export-Import Bank leaders voted to lend $99.7 million to expand an oil refinery in Indonesia, bucking Biden’s promise to stop steering public money to most foreign fossil fuel projects.
Northrop Grumman is on track to most easily take advantage of a new road map for winning research and development contracts from the Pentagon with the release of a strategy document centered on keeping the US on pace with rivals.
To contact the editor responsible for this story: Kayla Sharpe at firstname.lastname@example.org