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Reaction: Biden, McCarthy debt ceiling deal

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Published May 27, 2023 10:11PM ET Updated May 27, 2023 11:01PM ET

Reaction: Biden, McCarthy debt ceiling deal © Reuters. FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Joe Biden speaks to the media before departing the White House for Camp David, in Washington, U.S., May 26, 2023. REUTERS/Evelyn Hockstein/File Photo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) – U.S. President Joe Biden and top congressional Republican Kevin McCarthy have reached a tentative deal to raise the federal government’s $31.4 trillion debt ceiling, ending a months-long stalemate.

Here are some quotes from the announcement and reactions to the news:


“Earlier this evening, Speaker McCarthy and I reached a budget agreement in principle.

“It is an important step forward that reduces spending while protecting critical programs for working people and growing the economy for everyone. And, the agreement protects my and Congressional Democrats’ key priorities and legislative accomplishments.

“The agreement represents a compromise, which means not everyone gets what they want. That’s the responsibility of governing.

“And, this agreement is good news for the American people, because it prevents what could have been a catastrophic default and would have led to an economic recession, retirement accounts devastated, and millions of jobs lost.

“Over the next day, our negotiating teams will finalize legislative text and the agreement will go to the United States House and Senate. I strongly urge both chambers to pass the agreement right away.”


“I just got off the phone with the President – I talked to him twice today – and after weeks of negotiations, we have come to an agreement in principle.

“We still have a lot of work to do, but I believe this is an agreement in principle that’s worthy of the American people.

“It has historic reductions in spending, consequential reforms that will lift people out of poverty into the workforce, rein in government overreach – there are no new taxes, no new government programs.

“There’s a lot more within the bill. We still have more work to do tonight to finish all the writing of it” …

“I expect to finish the writing of the bill, checking with the White House and speaking to the president again tomorrow afternoon, and then posting the text of it tomorrow, and then we vote on it on Wednesday.”


“Tonight, I have been informed that there is an agreement in principle between the White House and House Republicans. This was a House Republican manufactured crisis. It’s up to House Republicans to defuse that crisis. And as soon as we learn the details of disagreement in principle we will have administration officials provide that information to the Democratic members of our caucus.”


​ “I am hearing the ‘deal’ is for a $4 trillion increase in the debt limit. If that is true, I don’t need to hear anything else. No one claiming to be a conservative could justify a YES vote.”


“Hearing @SpeakerMcCarthy’s soon to be finalized agreement on the debt limit will clawback $400 MILLION from the CDC “Global Health Fund” that sends money overseas to countries like China.

“Here’s a few other countries that will no longer get access to these taxpayer dollars: Afghanistan, Albania, Armenia, Bangladesh, Bhutan, Burkina Faso, Burma, Cambodia, China, Ivory Coast, DRC, Eswatini, Ethiopia, Georgia, Ghana, Haiti, India, Indonesia, Kenya, Kyrgyzstan, Liberia, Malawi, Mail, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Namibia, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Philippines, Rwanda, Senegal, Sierra Leone, South Africa, South Sudan, Tanzania, Thailand, Tunisia, Uganda, Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.

“Also on the chopping block is nearly $1.5 BILLION from the CDC’s “Vaccine Distribution and Monitoring Program.””


“I will be looking to see whether there are these increased work requirements for the poor. I thought that was the worst aspect of their (Republican) proposals because that would only serve to inflict pain on the poor.”

“If we didn’t reach a deal … the average American person would clearly see a hit … we had to reach some kind of conclusion here.”

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