All but just three members of the Senate Republican caucus have signed a letter addressed to Democratic leadership that says they will not vote for an increase in the national debt ceiling.
Why not? They say they won't do so because of the Democrats' plans to pass a $3.5 trillion spending bill using reconciliation.
But they're also calling on Democrats to use reconciliation to increase the ceiling.
“We will not vote to increase the debt ceiling, whether that increase comes through a stand-alone bill, a continuing resolution, or any other vehicle,” the letter, dated Aug. 10, said. “Democrats, at any time, have the power through reconciliation to unilaterally raise the debt ceiling, and they should not be allowed to pretend otherwise.” [...]
Democrats declined to include language to raise the debt limit in a budget resolution adopted early Wednesday morning, meaning that the next opportunity to address the issue would likely be in a stopgap funding bill that needs to pass by Sept. 30 to avert a government shutdown.
That would require at least 10 GOP members to join with Democrats. Republicans say they can’t support the debt limit increase because they oppose Democrats’ plans to spend up to $3.5 trillion on President Joe Biden’s economic agenda.
What this all means is an increase in the national debt ceiling will be attached to a government funding bill to avert a government shutdown at 12 a.m. on October 1st.
Will Republicans vote for that? Or will they trigger both a government shutdown and a default on the national debt at the same time?
They say they won't do it right now, but we'll see what they say next month. I don't think that's a message they want to carry into the midterm elections because they will lose. Republicans have never won the rhetorical war over government shutdowns. They can't win because opposition to functioning government is kind of their thing.