Rep. Ro Khanna says ‘large majority’ of House Democrats are ‘in flux’ on the deal
Rep. Ro Khanna, D-Calif., a member of House Progressive Caucus, said Sunday night that he was undecided about how he would vote on the budget deal hammered out by the White House and congressional Republicans.
“My sense is a large majority of the House Democratic Caucus is in flux as to where they’re going to be on this,” he said in an interview with NBC News.
Khanna said he is concerned about how the deal treats student loan forgiveness and work requirements for entitlement programs. He said he was also troubled by language in the bill that would expedite completion of the Mountain Valley Pipeline, a victory for influential Sen. Joe Manchin, D-W.Va., but a setback for the environmental movement.
Khanna added he wanted to talk to more colleagues before he decides how to vote — the progressives have scheduled a conference call for Monday, he said.
Bipartisan agreement reached to avoid debt-limit default, Biden announces
President Joe Biden on Sunday announced a debt ceiling deal he said would avoid a “catastrophic default” by the federal government while keeping the economy fluid.
“It takes the threat of catastrophic default off the table,” Biden said in a brief statement about the bipartisan agreement, which would still need approval from both chambers of Congress.
Biden expressed relief that the debt ceiling would not be in play for budget negotiations between Democrats and Republicans for two years.
“I strongly urge both chambers to pass that agreement,” he said. “Let’s keep moving forward.”
Biden said he had just spoken to House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, who earlier Sunday had expressed confidence that their debt ceiling deal would pass Congress, despite early criticism from some lawmakers.
McCarthy, R-Calif., said at a news conference that he expects that over 95% of House Republicans will support the 99-page bill, the language of which he released Sunday evening.