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Republican Speaker Kevin McCarthy last week came up with a game plan in an effort to confront the Biden Administration on negotiations to deal with the approaching debt ceiling crisis.  The two leaders met at the White House in February, but there have been no follow-up meetings since.  Biden says the Congress needs to pass a “clean” debt ceiling increase, while the Speaker insists that the increase or suspension be part of a broader program aimed at reducing government spending.

The White House unveiled the President's budget blueprint in early March, but there has been no corresponding budget laid out by the Republicans.  Democrats have made the argument that it is hard to negotiate when only one side has released a budget.  To deal with this asymmetry last week the Speaker put forward a Republican plan to increase the debt ceiling by $1.5T until March 31, 2024.  The bill would be tied to $4.5B in program cuts that would take place over ten years.  Since social security, Medicare and most defense programs are off the table, the Republican proposal takes a big hit at the remaining discretionary budget by reducing programs that range from child nutrition to energy programs to encourage wind and ethanol.

Republicans only hold a five-seat ma...

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