January 27, 2022
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US House could vote to hike debt limit this week, senior Democrat says

WASHINGTON — The US House of Representatives could vote this week to increase the federal authorities’s $28.9-trillion debt limit, the chamber’s No. 2 Democrat instructed reporters on Monday, with out offering particulars on how such an effort may unfold.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has urged Congress to act by Dec. 15 and a bipartisan suppose tank warned final week the US authorities could run out of the way to cowl its obligations by late this month, which might set off an unprecedented default that may rock the worldwide monetary system.

“Hopefully we will be able to resolve a way that that (a debt limit bill) can be done in the next few days,” House Majority Chief Steny Hoyer instructed a information convention.

Prime Republicans have been calling on President Joseph R. Biden’s Democrats to hike the debt limit with out Republican votes, utilizing a course of referred to as reconciliation. Democrats observe the elevated debt is required largely to cowl the price of tax cuts and spending applications throughout former President Donald Trump’s administration, which congressional Republicans supported.

However Democratic leaders within the House and Senate had been trying to find a manner to win passage.

Senate Republicans additionally expressed optimism that Senate Majority Chief Chuck Schumer and his Republican counterpart, Mitch McConnell, would quickly work out a debt ceiling settlement.

“I don’t think that anybody wants to see the full faith and credit of the United States damaged. And so, I’m an optimist,” Senator John Cornyn mentioned after a gathering with Mr. McConnell and different main Republican lawmakers.

Mr. Cornyn mentioned he believes the Treasury could prolong its debt ceiling deadline into January, probably by utilizing cash from the Freeway Belief Fund.

“But I don’t see any reason to delay the conversation,” he mentioned of ongoing talks between Mr. Schumer and Mr. McConnell. “If they can get this behind us, I think we’d all be better off.”

Mr. Hoyer mentioned it was attainable that Democrats would connect the debt-hike initiative to a nationwide protection authorization invoice now shifting by way of Congress.

A sizeable variety of liberal Democrats voted towards House passage of the protection invoice and attaching the debt limit to it could wreck possibilities for getting sufficient Republican votes as nicely after the Senate passes a revised model.

The debt limit is only one of a number of main initiatives that Democratic congressional leaders need to debate earlier than the top of the 12 months.

Mr. Schumer additionally desires extra votes on voting rights reforms, which have been repeatedly blocked by Senate Republicans, and Mr. Biden’s $1.75-trillion “Build Back Better” home investments invoice this month.

Mr. Schumer famous that the Senate parliamentarian nonetheless has to evaluate many parts of the laws, together with an immigration provision, and determine whether or not they qualify to be included within the invoice below a particular finances reconciliation course of that imposes tighter controls than common laws.

He didn’t say how he would advance voting rights laws if Republicans interact in an anticipated filibuster that may require 60 votes within the 100-member chamber to break a impasse. Many Democrats have been urging Mr. Schumer to push for a change within the Senate’s filibuster rule.

Final week, following a gathering Mr. Schumer held with a gaggle of Democrats, Senator Jon Tester mentioned he doubted a showdown over the filibuster could be staged this month given the Senate’s heavy legislative schedule.

“There’s just too much stuff on the docket,” he instructed Reuters. — Reuters

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