White House to arrange Biden-McCarthy call on debt limit at conclusion of G7 summit

White House to arrange Biden-McCarthy call on debt limit at conclusion of G7 summit

The White House is aiming to arrange a phone call between President Biden and Speaker McCarthy (R-Calif.) to try and get talks over avoiding a default back on track once the president has wrapped up his meetings at the Group of Seven (G-7) Summit in Japan on Sunday.

A White House official said in a statement that Biden had directed aides to coordinate with McCarthy to schedule a call for Sunday morning in Washington, D.C. The call will likely take place as Biden is flying back from Hiroshima, where he has been attending the G-7 since Thursday.

“President Biden has continued to closely track negotiations on a bipartisan budget framework and the pressing need for Congress to act to avert default,” the official said. “He received an update from his team both last night and this morning on the status of negotiations.”

The pending phone call between the two leaders comes as the White House and McCarthy’s team spent much of Saturday trading criticisms over who was to blame for a breakdown in negotiations on spending talks and raising the debt ceiling.

McCarthy told reporters at the Capitol earlier Saturday the White House had “moved backwards” and suggested progress was unlikely until Biden was back in the United States.

In a subsequent tweet, McCarthy claimed the “socialist wing of the Democrat Party” was dictating negotiations.

The White House responded by blaming Republicans for holding the economy hostage by refusing to raise the debt ceiling.

“It is only a Republican leadership beholden to its MAGA wing — not the President or Democratic leadership — who are threatening to put our nation into default for the first time in our history unless extreme partisan demands are met,” press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre said in a statement.

White House officials have further highlighted how Republican spending proposals would result in steep cuts to government programs.

Negotiators for the White House and McCarthy’s team have been meeting in recent days in hopes of reaching an agreement to avoid default. The Treasury Secretary has warned the U.S. could default as early as June 1 if Congress does not act to raise the debt limit.

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