“Biden Expresses Optimism on McCarthy Meeting for Debt Ceiling, Citing ‘Substantial Movement'”

President Joe Biden said he and Congressional leaders had a “productive meeting” Tuesday about the debt ceiling, but did not come to an agreement and are set to meet again Friday.

The government may go into economic default as soon as June 1, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said. The president and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy disagree on negotiations over raising the debt ceiling, with the House speaker linking a possible raise with spending cuts.

The president spoke to reporters Tuesday after meeting with McCarthy, House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. He reiterated his message that “default is not an option” and that “America is not a deadbeat nation,” but offered some sense of potential compromise, saying the only thing he’s ruling out is default.

McCarthy told reporters he “didn’t see any new movement” in an agreement on raising the debt ceiling after speaking with Biden, but the president said he has more optimism after meeting with the Congressional leaders.

Biden said there was “substantial movement” for everyone but McCarthy, as “everyone agreed that … defaulting on the debt is off the table.”

Biden also said he’s “considering” using the 14th Amendment to raise the debt ceiling unilaterally, and would take a look at seeing “what the court would say about whether or not it does work.”

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