Biden praises Senate passage of debt ceiling deal: ‘A big win for our economy’

Joe Biden
President Joe Biden smiles as he walks from Marine One upon arrival on the South Lawn of the White House, Thursday, June 1, 2023, in Washington. Biden is returning from Colorado. (AP Photo/Alex Brandon) Alex Brandon/AP

Biden praises Senate passage of debt ceiling deal: ‘A big win for our economy’

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President Joe Biden hailed the Senate’s passage of the bipartisan debt ceiling deal on Thursday night.

“Together, they demonstrated once more that America is a nation that pays its bills and meets its obligations — and always will be,” he said. “I want to thank [Senate Majority] Leader [Chuck] Schumer and [Senate Minority] Leader [Mitch] McConnell for quickly passing the bill.”

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The legislation, curbing spending and avoiding a first-ever default on the national debt, will now head to Biden’s desk.

It was the product of often tense negotiations between Biden, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), and their respective teams.

“No one gets everything they want in a negotiation, but make no mistake: this bipartisan agreement is a big win for our economy and the American people,” Biden said.

The bill passed the House a day earlier by a vote of 314 to 117, with majorities of both conferences voting in favor.

In both chambers, proponents comfortably overcame a left-right coalition against the bill. Conservatives thought it didn’t go far enough in restraining federal spending, while progressives thought it went too far.

But its passage with more Democratic than Republican votes could pose problems for McCarthy’s speakership. In the Senate, some Republican hawks protested the bill’s treatment of defense spending. This included McConnell, who otherwise supported it. The Senate also had a 60-vote threshold for the deal to pass.

In his statement, Biden outlined some of the spending cuts the deal avoided.

“It protects the core pillars of my Investing in America agenda that is creating good jobs across the country, fueling a resurgence in manufacturing, rebuilding our infrastructure, and advancing clean energy,” he said. “It safeguards peoples’ health care and retirement security, protecting bedrock programs like Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.”

“It protects vital investments in hardworking families that help make our country strong — from child care and education, to public safety and Meals on Wheels,” the president added. “It protects my student debt relief plan for hardworking borrowers. And it honors America’s sacred obligation to our veterans by fully funding veterans’ medical care.”

But the president had to give up on his demand for a debt ceiling extension without spending cuts.

Biden said senators “from both parties voted to protect the hard-earned economic progress we have made and prevent a first-ever default by the United States.”

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“Our work is far from finished, but this agreement is a critical step forward, and a reminder of what’s possible when we act in the best interests of our country,” he said.

Biden promised to sign the bill into law as soon as possible and speak to the public directly on Friday.

© 2023 Washington Examiner

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