With the help of 11 Republican votes, the Senate voted to help the United States avoid defaulting on its debts. Republican Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (KY) led the GOP senators who lent their votes.
With the 11 GOP votes, the Democrats will not get the needed majority. As a result, former President Donald Trump said that McConnell should go.
Senate Approves $480 Billion Debt Ceiling Increase
Earlier Thursday, the Senate approved a bill that helped the US avoid defaulting on its debt. 11 Republicans joined all 50 Democrats to provide the minimum 60 votes needed.
This ended the need for additional debate. The bill now moves to final passage, which only needs a simple majority the Democrats already have.
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If not for the GOP support, the US would have defaulted on its borrowing by October 18. If this happened, US Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned that the country would head into a recession.
Trump Scores McConnell For Helping Democrats
Meanwhile, Trump told Fox News that because of the vote, McConnell needs to go. In addition, the former President felt that the GOP needs new leadership in order to move forward.
Fox host Sean Hannity said that the approved Senate measure will give Democrats more time to pass their pet programs. In particular, extending the debt ceiling allows Democrats to pass their infrastructure plans that cost trillions of dollars.
In addition, Trump criticized the other Republican senators who voted with the Republican senate leader. But, he reserved his most acerbic comments for McConnell.
“Mitch is not the guy, not the right guy, he’s not doing the job. He gave [Sen. Charles Schumer of New York and his Democrats] a lifeline – it’s more than a lifeline, he gave them so much time to figure out what to do because they were in a big bind; they were unable to do anything,” he said.
“He had the weapon and he was able to use it. It’s a shame. That’s not a good thing that happened today. He made a big mistake,” Trump added.
Debt Ceiling Bill Gives US Ability to Pay Bills Until December 3
Specifically, the Senate bill allows the debt ceiling to increase by $480 billion. From the current national debt of $28.4 trillion, the bill now adjusts the ceiling to $28.8 trillion.
In fact, the Treasury Department estimates that the additional amount is enough to fund the US government to pay its bills until December 3.
With the Senate’s approval, the House of Representatives will now need to approve a counterpart bill. Now, everybody is fixed on Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA), who should lead efforts to get the bill approved in the next few days. A finalized version from both Chambers will need to go to President Joe Biden’s desk for signature by October 18.
Debt Ceiling Does Not Authorize New Spending
However, passing the increase of the debt ceiling does not allow the government to spend on new programs. In fact, it only allows the government to pay for programs that Congress already authorized. As a result, raising the debt ceiling means exactly that. It only allows the government to borrow more money it plans to spend.
Actually, Republicans want Democrats to solve the debt ceiling by themselves. In fact, the GOP earlier pledged they won’t support any efforts to increase the debt cap.
Instead, they suggested that Democrats go through reconciliation, which does not require a two-thirds majority vote. They believe that Biden’s party should bear all the burden since it’s the President who wants to increase spending on climate and social programs.
Watch the TODAY video reporting that former President Trump rips Mitch McConnell in scathing attack:
Do you agree with Trump’s assertion that McConnell must go? Also, what do you think would happen if the Republicans allowed the debt ceiling to expire?
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