McCarthy set to exchange 1-year debt limit increase for spending reforms

by Jacob Fuller

Matt Bush, FISM News

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) is expected to propose a 1-year debt limit increase that will be tied to certain spending concessions that could include massive spending cuts, stricter rules for social programs, and additional guidelines for new energy programs.

According to Just The News, the concessions that McCarthy is proposing could yield approximately $4 trillion in savings for taxpayers over 10 years.

“This is a culmination of all the conversations from leadership, from speaker from majority leader from the whip, talking to so many people over the last … 85 days about what they’d like to see in a debt limit deal. And that’s why you’re seeing this,” Republican Study Committee Chair Kevin Hern (R-Okla.) said.

The plan is expected to be proposed next week and would call for a House vote later in May to suspend the debt ceiling until May 2024. If that timetable is passed, it could lead to another round of debt ceiling negotiations just months before the 2024 presidential election.

The Treasury Department hit the current $31.4 trillion debt ceiling in January, but there are procedures and maneuvers available that have allowed the government to pay off all debts and obligations to date. Without Congress raising the debt ceiling by early summer, however, the Treasury Department would run out of those maneuvers and begin to default on the debt, a move that could have dire consequences for the economy.

President Joe Biden, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (N.Y.), and House Democratic Leader Hakeem Jeffries (N.Y.) have all been pushing for a debt limit increase with no strings attached.

Biden tweeted, “MAGA Republicans in Congress are putting our economy in jeopardy by threatening to refuse to pay America’s bills. Bills that took 200 years to accumulate. That would mean for the first time, America would default on its debt. Not on my watch.”


There are some specific measures being mentioned by some GOP leaders including repurposing unspent COVID relief funds, repealing some green tax credits, and reversing Biden’s student loan relief. The specifics of the cuts, however, are far less important than the overall goal of convincing Democrats that they are serious about slashing spending.

“We need to get to 218 votes, get it passed with the most conservative 218 votes in the conference, and get it sent to the Senate — and then let the president and the Democrats in the Senate tell the American people why they didn’t want to change the direction of the spending that’s caused the inflation that we’re seeing today,” Hern said.

This is an important moment for McCarthy not only to show that he has the strength to be the Speaker of the House, but also because Republicans hold the power of the federal purse strings, and it is up to him to get the most out of that power.

“Congress has an opportunity to seize the moment and get our reckless spending under control, and it would do well for President Biden and Senate Democrats to come to the table and make a full-hearted effort to come to an agreement,” Adam Brandon, president of FreedomWorks, said in a statement.

He also spoke of the importance of this moment for the Republican party.

“If they don’t get a cup of coffee out of this negotiation, you’re going to have a very disappointed base.”