Down To The Wire: How The Senate's Debt Ceiling Vote Could Play Out

Zinger Key Points
  • The bill is expected to pass this weekend, though potential amendments could stall the passage.
  • If passed, the debt limit would be suspended until 2025, extending beyond the 2024 presidential election.

With the Senate racing the clock to pass the debt ceiling bill before a looming June 5 deadline, the U.S. could potentially face an economically catastrophic default if the legislation does not reach President Joe Biden’s desk in time.

The bill’s journey through the Senate needs to be swift to ensure it reaches Biden by Monday, as June 5 marks the day Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned the U.S. will run out of funds to honor its bills.

Both Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Minority Leader Mitch McConnell are calling for a swift resolution, stressing the importance of avoiding default.

The House passed a bipartisan package on Wednesday night aimed at skirting a potential financial crisis when the borrowing authority expires next week. The bill couples debt limit relief with caps on discretionary spending, lauded by Republicans as an initial effort toward deficit reduction.

The compromise will likely save at most $2.1 trillion, according to Congressional Budget Office estimates.

Read also: Sanders Vows To Oppose Biden’s Debt Deal In Senate Vote: ‘It Could Have Been Much Worse’

The bill was met with opposition from both ends of the political spectrum, with hard-line conservatives criticizing it for insufficient deficit reduction, while left-leaning House Democrats take issue with expanded work requirements for welfare programs and modifications to the environmental review process for federal projects, according to Roll Call.

Senators on both sides of the isle, including Rand Paul (R-Kentucky) and Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina), voiced their opposition, and Bernie Sanders (I-Vermont) said he "cannnot in good conscience vote for" the bill.

Despite the objections, most Democratic leaders — at least in the House — are rallying behind the compromise as the best available course of action to circumvent a financial crisis.

The Senate is expected to pass the bill this weekend, but the process may be stalled by senators requesting votes on amendments. The bill would suspend the debt limit until Jan 1, 2025, extending beyond the 2024 elections.

Read next: Ron DeSantis Mocks Joe Biden’s ‘Vacation’ Presidency, Says Leadership Not About ‘Virtue Signaling’ But ‘Delivering Results’

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Posted In: GovernmentNewsPoliticsTop StoriesBernie SandersChuck Schumerdebt ceilingJoe BidenLindsey GrahamMitch McConnellRand Paul
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