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Senate Republicans Block New Schumer Bid to Suspend US Debt Ceiling

US Senate building - Sputnik International, 1920, 28.09.2021
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On Monday, Senate Republicans voted to block legislation which would raise the debt ceiling and allow the United States to avoid an impending government shutdown and possible default on its debts, with GOP Senate leader Mitch McConnell saying his party would "not provide" the votes to do so.
Republicans in the US Senate have blocked an attempt by Democratic Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer to hold a vote to suspend the federal debt limit.
Schumer earlier announced that he would ask the Senate for consent to hold a vote on Tuesday to increase the debt limit on a simple majority – rather than a 60-vote supermajority that's traditionally required for legislation to advance.

"Later this afternoon, I will ask unanimous consent for the Senate to hold a vote to increase the debt limit at a majority threshold. In other words, we would get consent that you only need 50 votes, not 60 votes, on this vote to increase the debt limit," Schumer said, speaking on the Senate floor on Tuesday.

Blaming Republicans for pushing America toward the brink of a government shutdown "and our first-ever default," the Senate majority leader emphasised that the GOP had voted unanimously to block the Democrats' legislation to raise the debt ceiling, and said it would be "the American people who pay the price" if the US ended up defaulting on its obligations.

"Republicans are now the official party of default. The party that says America doesn't pay its debts. The party that runs up the balance on the credit card, receives an invoice in the mail, and sends the bill straight to the shredder. No average family could get away with what the Republicans are trying to do, that's for sure. But Republicans here shrug their shoulders and say 'we incurred the debt, but we don't have to pay it,'" Schumer suggested.

"Let me be clear: I am still of the belief that addressing the debt limit, which includes debts incurred by both parties, should be done in a bipartisan way. But let's see if Leader McConnell truly wants what he's asking for," the senator added, referring to the simple majority vote on the debt ceiling.
"So if Republicans want to abscond from their responsibilities, not vote to pay the debt they incurred, so be it. It's a bad thing. It's a bad precedent, but this is a way out," he said.
Congressional Deadlock Threatens to Spark Global Debt Crisis
Congress has raised the debt ceiling 80 times over the past six decades, with US federal debt now reaching nearly $29 trillion, and total obligations standing at over $85 trillion,– or over four times the US' annual GDP.
In a letter to lawmakers on Tuesday, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned that the Treasury would exhaust its "extraordinary measures" to be able to keep making payments on US spending and obligations by 18 October if the debt ceiling was not raised.
On Monday, the Senate voted 50-48 to increase the debt ceiling, falling sort of the 60-vote supermajority required to approve the measure. The legislative body is evenly split between Democrats and independents caucusing with the Democrats and Republicans.
The debt ceiling issue is one of three pieces of legislation that the president's party hoped to pass this week related to his domestic agenda, with other bills including a $1.2 trillion infrastructure bill, and a ten-year, $3.5 trillion budget bill.
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