White House on raising US debt limit: 'We will not negotiate'
When asked multiple times whether Biden will give in to the demands to save the US from default, Jean-Pierre calls it "Congress' duty to get this done."
The White House made its stance clear on Tuesday that it does not have the will to negotiate to extend the nation's debt limit in light of Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen's recent warning of a debt default.
Yellen warned on Monday that the US is threatened by a debt default as soon as the start of June, as lawmakers struggle over raising the borrowing limit, adding in a letter to House Speaker Kevin McCarthy: "Our best estimate is that we will be unable to continue to satisfy all of the government's obligations by early June, and potentially as early as June 1, if Congress does not raise or suspend the debt limit before that time."
Yellen also said the US could run out of money in case the debt limit is not raised, meaning that it will not be able to pay for social programs, military budgets, and the national debt.
“Given the current projections, it is imperative that Congress act as soon as possible to increase or suspend the debt limit in a way that provides longer-term certainty that the government will continue to make its payments," she further stated.
Read next: Debt ceiling proposal widens rift between House, Senate Democrats
McCarthy's proposal included raising the US debt limit by $1.5 trillion to avert a default of the world's biggest economy.
In a statement, Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said: "This is not an issue that we will negotiate on," commenting that Biden is willing to talk about "a separate process to address the budget" cuts instead, which the House of Representatives has already asked for.
"It is Congress' constitutional duty to prevent default... Given the limited time Congress now has, it is clear that the only practical path to avoid default is for Congress to suspend the debt limit without conditions," said Jean-Pierre.
House Republicans have passed a bill for extending the debt limit in return for cuts to certain budgets across a range of government programs, which may have no chance at passing the Democratic-led Senate as Jean-Pierre quoted Biden viewing it as "unreasonable" and "dangerous.".
When asked multiple times whether Biden will give in to the demands to save the US from default, Jean-Pierre called it "Congress' duty to get this done" adding: "It's a question for them."
"What has changed?" she said after recalling that prior to Biden's term, Republicans in Congress backed three annual debt limit extensions with little opposition when former US president Donald Trump was in power.
Read more: US debt default would trigger 'economic catastrophe': Yellen