What’s Happening on Capitol Hill Monday?
May 8, 2023
Happy debt-limit summit eve, for those who celebrate!
The House returns to Washington after a district work period, but no votes are planned for today.
However, one can expect plenty of activity behind the scenes as Republicans and Democrats alike get ready for Tuesday’s much-anticipated meeting between House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, D-Calif., and President Joe Biden.
At present, both sides appear unwilling to budge on their fundamental positions: House Republicans have said they’ll raise the debt limit for a year, but only if the White House agrees to substantial cuts to federal spending.
The plan the GOP lawmakers have offered up, in its present form, will likely not come close to passing in the Democratic-controlled Senate.
Meanwhile, Biden has repeatedly said that he’d gladly talk about spending cuts and anything else the Republicans want to talk about — but only after the debt limit is raised and after the Republicans put their own budget proposal on the table.
As of today, the United States is less than three weeks away from an unprecedented default of its debt.
Appearing on ABC’s “This Week” television program on Sunday, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said there’s little chance the nation will avoid an economic calamity unless a deal is struck between the White House and Capitol Hill in the next few weeks.
And yet … life goes on.
Over at the White House, Biden will deliver remarks this afternoon on his plan to “protect consumers when there are flight delays and cancellations.” Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg will also appear.
And tonight, the president will host a screening of ”American Born Chinese” at the White House in celebration of Asian American, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Heritage Month.
Directed by Destin Daniel Cretton, “American Born Chinese” is an action-comedy that explores themes around identity, stereotypes, friendship, and self-acceptance through these three (ultimately intertwined) story threads.
On Wednesday, Biden will travel to the Hudson Valley area in New York where he will deliver a speech explaining why he believes Congress must avoid default immediately and without conditions.
On Friday, Biden will welcome President Pedro Sanchez of Spain to the White House to review the two nations’ efforts as NATO Allies and close partners to strengthen the bilateral defense relationship, transatlantic security and economic prosperity.
The two leaders are also expected to discuss how to coordinate on a range of issues as Spain prepares to assume the rotating presidency of the Council of the European Union in July, including climate change and expanded cooperation with Latin America and the Caribbean.
On Saturday, Biden will deliver the commencement address at Howard University in Washington, D.C.