White House: We Shouldn’t Have Talked to McCarthy Sooner on Debt Limit

On Thursday’s broadcast of Bloomberg’s “Surveillance,” White House National Security Council Coordinator for Strategic Communications John Kirby responded to criticisms that President Joe Biden should have met with House Speaker Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) about the debt ceiling sooner so that the President wouldn’t have to cancel parts of his overseas trip by stating that raising the debt limit “is a congressional duty, they should just simply do their job.”

Bloomberg TV Washington Correspondent Annmarie Hordern asked, “Critics will say then the President didn’t manage this correctly, he should have been speaking to Speaker McCarthy earlier so he didn’t have to cancel his foreign trip, but do you think the President here at the G7 will be able to say to leaders that the U.S. will not default on its debt?”

Kirby responded, “Well, the President’s optimistic. He said that before we left. He said that he’s optimistic that we’ll get there, and so that’s one of the reasons why we’re going home a little bit early so that he can be there to make sure that Congress does its job. But let’s go back a little a second on the talking to Speaker McCarthy, not defaulting is a congressional duty. It’s in the Constitution. There didn’t need to be negotiations over the debt. Now, the President is willing to sit down and talk to Speaker McCarthy about the budget and appropriations, and we’ll do that. When it comes to raising the debt ceiling, that is something that has been done 78 times under Democratic and Republican administrations, without negotiations, without having to have an argument about it. So, there’s no reason for — I mean the argument that we should have talked x number of days ago, this should be — this is a congressional duty, they should just simply do their job.”

Follow Ian Hanchett on Twitter @IanHanchett


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