Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi announced on Thursday that she would try to finalize an agreement that would raise the debt ceiling in the coming weeks instead of postponing it in the fall, taking into account dire warnings from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin that the government could be late by September. .
Pelosi (D-Calif.) Told the press that she wanted to raise the debt ceiling as part of an agreement setting spending levels for the next two years. Many Capitol legislators have expected a vote on
A train of spending and debt would not occur before September, but Pelosi said Thursday for the first time that it was necessary to act faster.
"Before the break," she said, referring to a long break in August.
Asked about the prospects for agreement, she replied, "We'll see. We come and go. "
She said that "the urgency" was motivated by Mnuchin and added that "what we are talking about is trying to find a solution".
Pelosi's comments come shortly after talking to Mnuchin at least for the second time this week. He has been arguing for weeks that Congress needs to move faster than legislators have planned to ensure the Treasury has enough money to pay its bills.
While Pelosi is trying to give Capitol Hill a new impetus, senior White House officials have also rushed to formulate their approach. Mnuchin and others met at the White House Thursday afternoon to discuss their spending cap and debt strategy.
Meanwhile, the White House has asked the federal agencies to submit new emergency stop plans by early August, said two people informed of the planning who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not allowed to discuss it.
White House officials are hoping to avoid another chaotic stop if Congress does not approve a funding bill by the end of September and many organizations were caught off guard at the end of September. days started in December 2018.
The White House is trying to negotiate a budget deal with lawmakers for more than a month, but the Trump administration and lawmakers remain distant about the amount of money they want to allow for the federal budget.
Many government functions were only funded at the end of September, and Democrats planned to wait and vote at the same time on a debt ceiling and a budget agreement. A number of Republican lawmakers had also favored this approach, as many believe it is politically treacherous to vote alone for an increase in the debt ceiling.
Mistrust currently prevails in the budget impasse between the White House and lawmakers. White House officials tried to suspend the vote on the debt ceiling for weeks, but some Democratic advisers said it was a ploy to impose a closure on the debt ceiling. government in October without forcing a debt ceiling crisis.
The government spends about $ 900 billion more than it generates revenue each year and covers the difference by issuing debt, a way to borrow money.
But it can only issue debt within a certain limit set by Congress. Congress last suspended the debt ceiling in 2018, but the suspension expired in March. The Treasury Department has tried to delay some payments in order to delay late payment of large payments, but it is expected to lack this flexibility in early or early September, depending on the timing of tax payments.
This accelerated timetable will pose serious problems for Pelosi, Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) And the White House, who will be forced to decide whether or not to make major concessions on an expenditure agreement in the US. a short time.
White House officials gave up their appeal earlier this year to impose major cuts in various programs. Instead, they announced that they would approve a slight increase in spending – especially for the army – from the month of October. But Democrats said they wanted more programs to see their spending go up, and negotiators stayed several billion dollars apart for weeks.