Schumer: 'Good conversation' with McConnell on debt hike

Asia's Tech News Daily

Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) said he and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) had a “good conversation” about raising the debt ceiling and that talks are ongoing as Congress barrels toward a debt cliff.

Schumer, speaking on the Senate floor, said Congress needed to deal with the debt ceiling “soon,” after Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned lawmakers that they have until Dec. 15 to raise the nation's borrowing limit.

“I recently had a good conversation with the Republican leader about this issue, and I expect to continue those talks on achieving a bipartisan solution to addressing the debt limit,” Schumer said.

“I look forward to achieving a bipartisan solution to addressing the debt limit soon,” he added.

Schumer and McConnell met before the weeklong Thanksgiving break, with the GOP leader telling reporters at the time that they had a “good discussion” about end-of-the-year issues.

In addition to raising the debt ceiling, Congress also needs to fund the government and figure out a path forward for a sweeping defense bill. Democrats also want to pass President Biden's spending plan before the end of the year.

Schumer hasn't yet outlined what the path forward is on the debt ceiling.

Democrats cut a deal with Republicans earlier this year on a short-term debt hike. Eleven Republicans helped advance the increase, something they've vowed they won't do again after facing fierce criticism from members of their own party.

Republicans are pushing Democrats to raise the debt ceiling on their own through reconciliation, a budget process that lets them avoid the filibuster.

Republicans have offered to expedite that process, which typically involves a lengthy debate and a freewheeling vote-a-rama where any senator can offer an amendment.

The talks between Schumer and McConnell are a notable shift from October, where the two regularly traded fire as they dug into their positions.

“It is a rare moment when you say, Chuck and Mitch met and talked about something-and they did,” said Sen. Dick Durbin (D-Ill.), Schumer's No. 2., adding that he hoped “it was positive.”

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