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Sen. Mitch McConnell: Congress May Blend Federal Spending, Debt Limit Talks

CongressHouse and Senate lawmakers are expected to tackle the future of U.S. government spending, tax breaks, highway funding and borrowing authority when they return from their annual summer recess, The Hill newspaper reported Sunday.

Rebecca Shabad and Peter Schroeder write Congress set the debt limit at $18.1 trillion in February 2014 and Treasury Secretary Jack Lew has forecast that the department will exhaust all “extraordinary measures” to avoid a default by Oct. 31.

The Bipartisan Policy Center projected Congress would face a late November or early December deadline of raising the debt ceiling, according to the newspaper.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) told reporters before the congressional August recess that he believes members of Congress will collaborate to ensure that the U.S. meet its financial obligations.

“We’re not doing government shutdowns and we’re not threatening to default on the national debt,” McConnell was quoted as saying.

He expects Congress to merge discussions over the federal budget and negotiations over the debt ceiling, Shabad and Schroeder report.

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