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“Extending the McConnell provision would not permit the executive branch to spend money or collect revenues without prior congressional approval,” the blog continued. “It simply allows the government to finance existing legal obligations that Congresses and presidents of both parties have approved in the past.”
Yet Republicans are still pushing back, and Portman’s letter closed with a plea to the president to reconsider his position, given his vote against extending the debt limit in 2006.
“Mr. President, while serving in the United States Senate, you acknowledged the Congress’s important role in establishing the debt limit when you voted against raising it in 2006,” the draft of the letter reads. “We believe that preserving Congress’s role in setting the debt limit is necessary to encourage deficit reduction and uphold our constitutional tradition of legislative control over borrowing.”
McConnell’s office also hit back against the plan, saying, “While we’re certainly flattered that the administration praised one piece of the Budget Control Act, they seem to have amnesia on the rest of the plan. Namely, the debt ceiling was raised last year only after the White House agreed to at least $2 TRILLION in cuts to Washington spending, and agreed to be bound by the timing and amount set by Congress — not his own whim.”