In a letter to President Joe Biden, nearly half of the Republicans in the Senate declared they any effort to increase the debt ceiling must include structural reforms in federal spending.
“We, the undersigned members of the Senate Republican Conference, write to express our outright opposition to a debt-ceiling hike without real structural spending reform that reduces deficit spending and brings fiscal sanity back to Washington,” the lawmakers said.
Led by Sen. Mike Lee of Utah, the two dozen signatories – who include Sens. Ted Cruz (TX), Rick Scott (FL), Rand Paul (KY), Mike Crapo (ID), John Barrasso (WY) and Marsha Blackburn (TN) – said the demand for fiscal reform in exchange for raising the debt ceiling is a matter of internal policy for Republican senators.
The GOP policy calls for cuts in future spending equal to or greater than any proposed increase in the debt ceiling. Alternatively, the senators say they would consider structural reforms such as the Prevent Government Shutdowns Act, which would automatically fund the government if appropriations bills are not finished in time while requiring lawmakers to remain in Washington until the appropriations work is done, and the Full Faith and Credit Act, which would require the U.S. Treasury to prioritize certain payments once the debt ceiling is reached.
The letter, which was not signed by Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (KY), provides support for House Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s (R-CA) effort to negotiate spending cuts with Democrats in return for raising the debt ceiling.