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Republicans gear up to inflict maximum pain on Democrats

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  • Republicans are set to hinder Democrats’ efforts to stave off a government default.
  • It seems likely Democrats will need to lift the debt ceiling on their own, via a reconciliation bill.
  • Some Republican senators are prepared to draw out the process to inflict pain on Democrats.

Republicans are blocking attempts by Democrats to renew the US’s ability to pay its bills, pushing the US closer to the precipice of default.

Congress has just 16 days to raise or suspend the debt ceiling to dodge what could be a catastrophic hit to the economy, ranging from delays in Social Security checks to seniors, turmoil in financial markets, and cuts to safety net programs like unemployment insurance and Medicaid. The world’s trust in the dollar would fade. Interest rates would soar, lifting mortgage, car loan, and credit card payments. Ratings agency S&P would cut its rating to the worst-possible rank of D.

Raising the debt ceiling allows the US government to pay back what it owes, and the limit had to be lifted this year regardless of Biden’s spending plans. Democrats are pressing Republicans to help raise it, arguing both parties racked up another $7.8 trillion in new debt under the Trump administration. Republicans also raised or suspended the debt limit three times under President Donald Trump.

Now that Biden is in office, the GOP is reversing course and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is spearheading the GOP drive to demand Democrats lift the limit on their own, escalating efforts to undermine President Joe Biden’s domestic agenda.

Democrats’ attempts to shame McConnell into caving have failed so far. At the same time, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer said Wednesday that Democrats “cannot and will not” use budget reconciliation to solve the problem.

The clock is ticking with no signs of a resolution to the impasse.

Republicans ready a salvo of time-consuming amendments

Even if Schumer changes his mind, some Republicans are preparing to drag out the process to inflict maximum pain on Democrats as they start negotiating changes to a $3.5 trillion social spending package. They will have many opportunities to do this, since Democrats’ best bet for lifting the ceiling on their own is reconciliation, an arduous, time-consuming procedure governed by strict budgetary rules. It also allows certain bills to be passed with just a 50-vote majority.

Some experts say it would require at least two weeks for a party-line debt-limit hike to succeed. Part of it includes the so-called vote-a-rama, which forces lawmakers to take politically uncomfortable votes back to back in an event that can last for over 12 hours.

Some Republicans already expect to delay a Democrat-only debt limit increase with amendments of their own.

“We plan to use the rules and also to slow down a lot of really bad policy that will forever transform the country,” Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, a close McConnell ally, told Insider. “I don’t mind seeing them burn up some floor time on reconciliation so it makes it less likely they can pass their reckless spending bill.”

“If we do have another vote-a-rama, I’m sure I will have some amendments at that point. I don’t at this stage. We’ll cross that bridge when we get there,” Sen. Mitt Romney of Utah told Insider.

Others are less certain but still don’t plan to make reconciliation any easier. If Democrats proceed with a reconciliation effort, “there will be amendments as there always are,” Sen. Ted Cruz told Insider, adding Democrats will inevitably “be able to pass whatever they can get 50 votes to do.”

“My personal interest is not in making the process more difficult. I don’t want to make it any easier, because [Democrats] already have all the tools and authorities they need to do it themselves from start to finish,” Sen. Kevin Cramer of North Dakota told Insider.

Another rule in the process could reap political benefits for Republicans and make some Democrats squirm in next year’s midterms. Reconciliation would likely require Democrats to attach a specific debt ceiling figure to demonstrate it has an effect on the federal budget.

“[Democrats] need to put a number to it,” Sen. Ron Johnson of Wisconsin told Insider. “They need to show the American public how much they’re gonna have to increase the debt ceiling to accommodate their deficit spending. That’s why they have to use reconciliation.”

The threat of a prolonged vote-a-rama probably wouldn’t be enough to kill Democrats’ effort. A wave of amendments would likely only delay the final vote, and Schumer is unlikely to bring a bill to the floor if he isn’t positive Democrats are unified in raising the ceiling.

Some are already breaking with Democratic leaders and urging their party to take unilateral action perhaps as soon as next week.

“Dems have all the levers. Even if [Republicans] wants to flirt with default, we’re not gonna allow it,” Sen. Tim Kaine of Virginia told Insider, arguing Democrats shouldn’t wait until the 11th hour and should “just do it” on their own.

Still, that could cement the debt ceiling as more a political bludgeon than a tool to meet financial obligations. Raising the limit had long been a bipartisan effort, and has been successfully pulled off 78 times since 1960. Republicans even enjoyed some Democratic support when they moved to suspend the ceiling in 2017.

That precedent now seems to be on its last legs. And with the debt ceiling still intact, Congress risks another last-minute showdown with grave stakes.

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Survey shows majority of Americans reject Build Back Better: More think Biden’s infrastructure spending bill will hurt them more than help them

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In a total inversion of what Democrats had expected, Americans have dismissed the expensive framework bill with gigantic social projects incorporated into it. Another survey shows that more Americans repel the Democrats’ $1.75 trillion spending proposition than welcome it.

As indicated by another ABC News/Ipsos survey delivered on Sunday, public help for President Joe Biden’s bills to expand spending on framework and social projects has blurred.

The overview tracked down that 32% of Americans feel that the spending bills would hurt individuals like them if they became law, while 25% said they accept the bills would help them. Close to 66% (64%) of Republicans figure the bills would hurt individuals like them, and 29% of free thinkers feel something very similar. In spite of being the significant system of Biden’s administration, less than half of Democrats (47%) accept the two bills would help them.

A CBS News survey from recently tracked down that 36% of respondents said it would help them and their family versus 33% who said it would hurt their friends and family. The overview additionally said that 79% of review members said that expansion was brought about by supply and assembling issues after the pandemic and 66% said it was brought about by U.S. government strategy. “And when asked about potential causes of inflation right now, two-thirds cited U.S. government policy,” the outlet stated.

The poll showed that just 37% of Americans thought that Biden and the Democrats were centered around issues they care very much about.

This sad survey for Biden and the Democrats shows up on that very days as a NBC News review that shows the president at unsurpassed lows. The NBC News surveys found that Biden was submerged interestingly of his administration – 42% endorsement rating versus 54% who object.

The survey likewise showed that 71% said the nation is “off on the wrong track” – including 48% of Democrats.

“When you see a wrong track of 71%, it is a flashing red light,” Republican pollster Bill McInturff of Public Opinion Strategies said. “These folks are telling us that this is not going well.”

That is a huge increment from one more survey in September that said 61% of Americans felt like the country has “pretty seriously gotten off on the wrong track.”

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President Biden says the Pope advised him to continue to take communion and considered him a ‘good Catholic’

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President Joe Biden said that Pope Francis let him know he was a “good Catholic” and said he could keep on taking communion regardless of the complaints of numerous U.S. bishops.

Biden made the case after a private gathering with the pontiff at the Vatican on Friday.

“We just talked about the fact he was happy that I was a good Catholic and I should keep receiving Communion,” Biden said about the gathering.

He added that the topic of abortion didn’t come up in the gathering.

An assertion from the White House showed that Biden said thanks to the Pope for pushing for an “equitable global economic recovery” and for battling global warming.

“Biden thanked His Holiness for his advocacy for the world’s poor and those suffering from hunger, conflict, and persecution,” the assertion added.

The Vatican didn’t affirm Biden’s case in their official statement about their gathering.

Biden’s claim will probably disappoint and outrage many conservative Catholics in the U.S. who have called for communion to be declined to politicians who stand behind abortion, which is in opposition to Catholic church teaching.

The issue will be taken up by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops following upon a vote during their June plenary meeting to address it generally. After Biden met with the Pope, they delivered an assertion saying that they would not single out a particular legislator if they vote to say something about the issue.

The Pope had recently reacted to the contention by approaching the diocesans to try not to politicize the congregation’s most elevated holy observance, which would transform it into a “source of discord rather than unity within the episcopate and the larger church in the United States.”

Here’s additional info on the gathering between the Pope and Biden:

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Gold Star father tears into Biden over supposed arrangement to give large installments to illegal migrant families

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Gold Star father David Horton slammed President Joe Biden in a meeting Sunday, scrutinizing the Biden organization’s accounted for plan to convey huge financial installments to some migrant families.

The Wall Street Journal announced last week about the arrangement to pay migrant families affected by previous President Donald Trump’s zero-tolerance illegal immigration policies.

The Biden administration is in talks to offer immigrant families that were separated during the Trump administration around $450,000 a person in compensation, according to people familiar with the matter, as several agencies work to resolve lawsuits filed on behalf of parents and children who say the government subjected them to lasting psychological trauma.

The U.S. Departments of Justice, Homeland Security, and Health and Human Services are considering payments that could amount to close to $1 million a family, though the final numbers could shift, the people familiar with the matter said. Most of the families that crossed the border illegally from Mexico to seek asylum in the U.S. included one parent and one child, the people said. Many families would likely get smaller payouts, depending on their circumstances, the people said.

Among the issues pundits have raised with the arrangement, the greatest is that non-citizens remain to get additional cash from the U.S. government than gold star families if the arrangement becomes reality.

As of now, the U.S. government pays the group of fallen assistance individuals $100,000 in “death gratuity”; the installments are tax excluded. The families of service members additionally have the choice to gather a limit of $400,000 in extra security, however administration individuals need to pay into the protection intend to accept its advantages.

Speaking on “Fox and Friends,” Horton — whose son, Army Spc. Christopher Horton, was killed in Afghanistan in 2011 — proclaimed the Biden administration’s arrangement “an insult” and clarified it disrespects military families.

“I think it’s another — yet another insult … against our military families and Gold Star families and veterans’ families,” Horton said. “It’s just another another slap in the face. It’s completely disrespectful.”

“To compare an illegal person who has broken our country’s border laws … they’ve broken the law coming in on our borders and to compare that with someone, a patriot like my son, who gave his all on the battlefield of Afghanistan, and to just say, ‘Oh well, the value is more for someone who has broken our laws’ … and now to say, ‘Oh, we owe you money — and it’s more money than we would pay a patriot — I am outraged,” Horton said.

“You just wonder, where is the outcry against some of these policies that are just there? Unbelievable to me,” Horton added.

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