Treasury Warns of Potential Cash Shortage
The meeting was called after the U.S. Treasury warned that the government could face a cash shortage to pay its bills as early as June 1. Biden invited four Senate and House of Representatives leaders - two Democrats and two Republicans - to the White House next week.
White House Clarifies Biden's Stance on Debt Ceiling
White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre stated that President Biden will not negotiate the debt ceiling but is open to discussing the budget and spending with congressional leaders.
Debt Limit Raised Under Trump Administration
The debt limit was raised three times without issue under former President Donald Trump's administration, as noted by Jean-Pierre.
Potential Unprecedented Default Looms
The Treasury's June 1 estimate raises the risk of an unprecedented default that could impact the global economy. This adds urgency to political calculations in Washington, where Democrats and Republicans are preparing for a possible months-long standoff.
Yellen Urges Congress to Take Action
Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen sent a letter to Congress, warning that the Treasury may be unable to meet all U.S. government payment obligations "potentially as early as June 1" without congressional action.
Biden Reaches Out to Leaders for Meeting
President Biden contacted Republican House Speaker Kevin McCarthy in Jerusalem, where he is on a diplomatic trip, to invite him to the May 9 White House meeting. This will be the first time the two leaders have discussed the issue since February. Biden also contacted minority leaders in the Senate and House, Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell and House Democratic leader Hakeem Jeffries, and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer.