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McCarthy Reveals $1.5 Trillion U.S. Debt Ceiling Increase Plan

U.S. House Speaker Kevin McCarthy is set to present a plan to raise the nation's debt ceiling by $1.5 trillion as Republicans and Democrats face off over the government's borrowing limit. The proposal is expected to be introduced in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives.

Kevin McCarthy
Kevin McCarthy

Debt Ceiling Bill Details

The bill will include most of the proposal McCarthy presented on Monday, featuring federal budget cuts to 2022 levels and limiting spending growth to 1% per year. This would be in exchange for raising the current $31.4 trillion debt limit, according to a House Republican aide.

White House Stance on Debt Limit

The White House maintains that Congress should raise the debt limit without conditions, as was done three times under former President Donald Trump. The debt ceiling increase is necessary to cover the costs of previously approved spending and tax cuts.

Implications of Not Raising the Debt Ceiling

The U.S. government has already reached its $31.4 trillion borrowing limit and is expected to be unable to meet its financial obligations by this summer. If Congress does not take action, this will trigger a historic default with significant consequences for the U.S. and global economies.

McCarthy's Proposed Debt Ceiling Increase

According to a source briefed on the proposal, McCarthy will suggest a $1.5 trillion increase in the debt limit. This could cover the government's needs until early next year, leading to another debt ceiling battle during the 2024 presidential campaign.

US House of Representatives
US House of Representatives

Challenges Within the Republican Caucus

McCarthy leads a divided caucus with a narrow 222-213 majority. Some hardline members demand significant spending cuts and downplay the risks of not addressing the debt ceiling. House Republicans have yet to present their budget, which President Biden believes is necessary to negotiate to spend.

Senate Obstacles to the Proposal

Even if McCarthy's proposal passes the House, it is unlikely to find support in the Democratic-controlled Senate.

White House's Budget Proposal

Last month, the White House proposed its budget to reduce the nation's deficit by nearly $3 trillion over ten years. However, it relies on tax increases for businesses and the wealthy rather than spending cuts.

CBO Analysis on Debt Solutions

The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office presented options to address the debt last month, revealing that higher tax collections would have a significantly greater impact than spending cuts.