Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy demanded President Biden return to the negotiating table for debt ceiling negotiations, as talks remain stalled over key spending cuts and a potential increase to the ceiling overall.
McCarthy accused the president of stifling a deal during “Sunday Morning Futures,” after Biden dismissed the Republican spending proposal as “wacko” and “irresponsible.”
“I think as president and the leader of the free world, this is one of the problems,” McCarthy told Maria Bartiromo. “We have challenges around this country, around the world. He needs to show leadership and come to the negotiating table instead of putting us in default. This is risky, what he’s doing.”
“He’s threatening the markets. Think of his ideas in the next month. If you actually have good credit, you pay more. If you have bad credit, you get a discount. Who believes in these types of ideas?” he continued. “This goes against everything, what America was created upon that if you work hard, you can succeed, and that’s the difference. Come to the table, negotiate and do what is right.”
McCarthy and other House Republicans unveiled a plan last week to cut government spending in various ways while also raising the debt ceiling by $1.5 trillion.
The plan would slash spending for the IRS, Democrats’ green energy agenda, and unused COVID-related funding.
But McCarthy said the president has yet to respond to House lawmakers about the proposal.
“This rests upon his feet, not because he made a bad decision. The real decision is he’s afraid to even negotiate,” McCarthy said.
Biden addressed the GOP-led proposal last week, dismissing it as “wacko” and shifting blame as negotiations remain at a standstill.
“Folks, here’s this really dangerous MAGA Republican congressman threatening to default on the national debt, the debt that took 230 years to accumulate overall… unless we do what they say,” Biden said during a speech last week. “They say they’re going to default unless I agree to all these wacko notions they have.”
“Default would be worse and totally irresponsible,” he continued.
But McCarthy insisted there was never any threat, and he is actually the one to blame for the delay.
“We’re the only ones in Washington that are actually putting a responsible plan out that will raise the debt limit,” he said. “Think about it; for more than 80 days it’s been since I sat down with the president on February 1st to negotiate, to work through this, and he’s ignored it.”
Even White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre sparred with reporters last week when she was asked if the president was responsible for the delay in reaching a bipartisan deal.
“It’s not the president that’s risking this. It is Congress that is risking this,” Jean-Pierre responded sharply. “These political stunts you’re seeing from Speaker McCarthy and the MAGA wing – this is dangerous. These are political stunts that will have long-lasting effects.”
McCarthy said he is hopeful to have a vote on the budget proposal by the end of this coming week. If it passes, with what he called a “very slim majority,” it will head to the Senate for another vote.
“I cannot imagine someone in our conference that would want to go along with Biden’s reckless spending. This is responsible. This is something that we have sat down for months that everybody’s had input in,” McCarthy said. “It’s not where everybody gets 100% of what they want, but when we send this to the Senate, we’re showing that, yes, we’re able to raise the debt ceiling into the next year.”
“What we’re doing is we’re being responsible fiscally and bringing our house back in order,” he continued. “It doesn’t solve all of our problems, but it gets us on the right path and this gets us to the negotiating table, just as government and America expects us to do.”
Fox News’ Elizabeth Elkind contributed to this report.