House Budget Committee Chairman Jodey Arrington said Sunday the ball is in President Biden’s court when it comes to raising the debt ceiling and avoiding default amid broken-down negotiations.
The Texas Republican emphasized that the onus is on the president to strike a deal because House Republicans passed their own debt limit increase that includes trillions of dollars in cuts over the next decade.
“We listened to [Treasury Secretary] Janet Yellen and her warning that we needed to move with urgency and purpose. And we did. In the House, Republicans did it,” Mr. Arrington said on ABC’s “This Week.” “The question is, will President Biden listen to Janet Yellen, his own secretary, and with the window closing on the date, the default date, and respond? We’ve done our job.”
Mr. Biden said Sunday that he is exploring whether his administration can invoke the 14th Amendment to avoid default. At a press conference with reporters at the Group of Seven meeting in Japan, he said there are logistical challenges to invoking the amendment in time.
“I’m looking at the 14th Amendment as to whether or not we have the authority — I think we have the authority,” Mr. Biden said. “The question is, could it be done and invoked in time that it would not be appealed, and as a consequence past the date in question and still default on the debt.”
Mr. Arrington suggested that Mr. Biden has been backed into a corner due to earlier resistance in negotiating with Republicans over their demand for spending cuts in exchange for lifting the debt ceiling.
“My reaction is, the president had almost 100 days without engaging with the process now. His back is against the wall, we have one proposal that has passed the House. Nobody else has put a proposal on the table,” Mr. Arrington said.”He needs to respond to that proposal and now he’s, I believe, just making more excuses not to negotiate a responsible debt ceiling deal that will raise the debt ceiling, pay our bills, protect the good faith and credit of the United States, but also deal with the spending problem that’s driving the inflation crisis and some of the economic woes that we’re experiencing, along with just this massive and unsustainable debt that we’re carrying as a county.”
• Haris Alic contributed to this report.
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