Progressives Worry Biden Remarks May Signal Concession to GOP Spending Cuts

After assembly with congressional leaders earlier this week because the U.S. barrels towards a catastrophic debt default, President Joe Biden stated that “we ought to be chopping spending,” a comment that fueled issues amongst progressives that the White Home is making ready to cede to a minimum of some Republican calls for in trade for a deal to elevate the debt ceiling.

President Joe Biden has stated repeatedly that he is not going to negotiate over the debt ceiling, and that the arguably unconstitutional restrict should be raised with none preconditions.

However the president has additionally expressed openness to funds negotiations with Home Republicans, who’re utilizing the specter of default as leverage to push for steep cuts to federal nutrition assistance, Medicaid, and different key government programs.

Biden insists the debt restrict and funds talks are separate, however as Vox’s Andrew Prokop noted Wednesday, the president is “negotiating earlier than the GOP has launched” the debt ceiling hostage.

Chatting with reporters on the White Home on Tuesday after assembly with Home Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), Home Minority Chief Hakeem Jeffries (D-N.Y.), Senate Majority Chief Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.), and Senate Minority Chief Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.), Biden said that “he made clear… that default is just not an possibility.”

However the president added that he additionally “made it clear that we are able to minimize spending and minimize the deficit.”

Biden supplied a number of examples of what he would like to chop, corresponding to “tax subsidies for Large Oil corporations” and prescription drug prices in Medicare — funds reforms that progressives help.

Home Republicans, although, are pushing for a lot steeper and broader cuts to authorities spending, particularly demanding a cap on federal spending at fiscal yr 2022 ranges. Such a cap would entail steep cuts to crucial authorities businesses and packages, significantly if the Pentagon funds is shielded.

Whereas Biden has publicly rejected that GOP demand, Reuters reported Thursday that “White Home officers acknowledge that they have to settle for some spending cuts or strict caps on future spending if they’re to strike a deal.”

Lindsay Owens, govt director of the Groundwork Collaborative, wrote Thursday that Biden’s remarks this week and rising discuss of a deal on spending caps are “fairly troubling.”

Owens prompt the present negotiations are starting to appear like “2011-light,” a reference to the final time the GOP used the debt ceiling as leverage to enact painful spending cuts. Biden, who was then serving as vice chairman, was the White Home’s chief negotiator throughout that standoff, which culminated in austerity laws that badly hampered the U.S. recovery from the Nice Recession.

In an announcement to The Washington Publish on Thursday, Owens said that Biden “shouldn’t give in to hostage-taking.”

As an alternative, Owens added, he ought to “observe the lead of nearly all of Individuals who vastly favor bringing in income via tax will increase on the wealthy quite than making dangerous spending cuts.”

The president was beforehand scheduled to sit down down with congressional leaders once more on Friday, however the assembly was postponed till early subsequent week as staffers for the White Home and lawmakers proceed to trade proposals to keep away from a default, which might wipe out millions of jobs and doubtlessly spark a worldwide financial disaster.

The Treasury Division recently warned that the debt ceiling could possibly be breached as quickly as June 1.

It’s far from clear whether or not Biden’s latest feedback and indicators rising from the White Home point out a substantive concession to the Home GOP’s campaign for spending cuts.

However as talks proceed with little public proof of progress, observers are more and more voicing alarm over the potential of a deal that features victories for Home Republicans who’re desperate to boot millions of people off of safety net programs.

“It increasingly seems like the White House has decided to cave and is trying to slowly acclimate people to it, so there’s no abrupt blink followed by shock and outrage,” Brian Beutler, editor-in-chief of Crooked Media, warned Thursday, pointing to the Reuters reporting. “Simply slowly growing resignation. Fairly pathetic.”

Slate’s Alex Sammon similarly called the White Home’s seeming hints at spending concessions to Republicans “a horrific growth,” significantly “after Republicans routinely raised the debt ceiling below Trump” and “after Democrats had a trifecta for 2 years and will’ve raised it any time.”

​​Not everybody will pay for the information. However when you can, we’d like your help.

Truthout is broadly learn amongst folks with decrease ­incomes and amongst younger people who find themselves mired in debt. Our website is learn at public libraries, amongst folks with out web entry of their very own. Folks print out our articles and ship them to members of the family in jail — we obtain letters from behind bars often thanking us for our protection. Our tales are emailed and shared round communities, sparking grassroots mobilization.

We’re dedicated to retaining all Truthout articles free and accessible to the general public. However in an effort to do this, we’d like those that can afford to contribute to our work to take action.

We’ll by no means require you to offer, however we are able to ask you from the underside of our hearts: Will you donate what you possibly can, so we are able to proceed offering journalism within the service of justice and reality?