Debt Ceiling Bill Clears Big Hurdle

Clears House Rules Committee vote to advance to House floor
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 31, 2023 12:02 AM CDT
Debt Ceiling Bill Clears Big Hurdle
House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y., joined by fellow Democrats, speaks with reporters about the debt ceiling, at the Capitol in Washington, Thursday, May 25, 2023.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

The debt ceiling bill passed a key procedural hurdle Tuesday night when the House Rules Committee advanced it to the House floor in a 7-6 vote. As Fox News reports, it wasn't guaranteed to clear what the outlet calls a "critical" hurdle, as Republicans hold a 9-4 advantage on the committee and three of them had indicated they might vote alongside the Democrats to oppose adopting the rule, which governs the terms of debate on the legislation, per the Hill. Instead, just two Republicans voted with Democrats, which means the bill can advance to the floor for debate and a vote Wednesday.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has given Monday as the deadline, by which the US could default on its debts if the borrowing limit isn't increased, and Fox notes that at the committee hearing, both the Democrats and the Republicans took the opportunity to "blame each other for rushing" to do so at the last minute. The legislation faces oppositions from conservatives and progressives alike. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, for one, has already said she will vote against it, and NPR reports some far-right lawmakers say Kevin McCarthy should be ousted as House speaker over it. But Fox reports it's expected to pass on a bipartisan vote, and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer has said the Senate may hold a weekend vote to get it passed in time. (Read more debt ceiling stories.)

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