Officials in President Barack Obama’s administration announced yesterday their hopes in reaching a deal in Congress to raise the debt ceiling in exchange for about $1.5 trillion in spending cuts over 10 years. The leaders hope the decision can be made in time for the Aug. 2 deadline.
The budget negotiations are part of an ongoing stalemate connected to the debt ceiling where Republicans are refusing to allow tax hikes and Democrats are demanding fewer spending cuts.
Discussion between the White House and Congress over the weekend did not move the two sides closer to making a deal.
“The president made clear he wants the largest deal possible,” said Jack Lew, budget director for the White House on NBC’s Meet The Press. “He wants the most we can to reduce the deficit. That would be the right thing to do for the American people. He made it clear he’s willing to go into areas he’s not in the past been comfortable going into.”
“All of the leaders of Congress and the president have acknowledged that we must raise the debt limit,” he added. “And the question is how.”
House Republicans are prepared to hold a vote this week on their “cap, cut and balance” plan, as long as Congress approves a constitutional amendment that requires a balanced budget. The proposal is expected to pass the House but meet resistance within the Senate.