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Debt ceiling deal: long way to go in little time | US Politics In :60 | GZERO Media

Debt ceiling deal: long way to go in little time

Jon Lieber, head of Eurasia Group's coverage of political and policy developments in Washington, DC shares his perspective on US politics.

Will President Biden get a budget deal with Republican lawmakers?

In what's become an almost annual exercise, the US needs to increase its debt limit once again. With over $31 trillion on the national debt, Congress has to authorize the ability for treasury to borrow any more, and the new Republican majority in the House sees this as an opportunity to try to force President Biden into achieving some long-term budget cuts. The house passed a bill last month that would cut spending by about $4 trillion over the next 10 years. President Biden has proposed a budget that would reduce the deficit by over $3 trillion over the next 10 years through a combination of spending cuts and tax increases. The Republicans have no interest whatsoever in those tax increases, however, so what they're negotiating towards is a package of spending cuts over 10 years that would probably cut budget deficits by somewhere between $1-2 trillion. However, President Biden up until about a week ago said that he was not open to negotiating on the debt limit, and instead wanted to keep the discussions focused around the government's annual appropriations process, which is supposed to take place around September 30th. With the debt limit deadline coming up on or around June 1st, the US could potentially default if lawmakers have not achieved a deal well in advance of that deadline, which we're about two weeks away from right now. Negotiations are just starting to heat up between Speaker Kevin McCarthy's staff and the White House staff. President Biden has canceled part of his trip to Asia in order to come back to the United States to finish these negotiations. And this very well could come down to the wire, which is making markets very nervous about the fact that the US may not be able to make payments to certain people starting sometime in early June.

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Clarence Thomas non-disclosure broke no rules, but optics aren't good | GZERO World

Bharara: Clarence Thomas' donor trips may not be illegal, but not a good look

US Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas has come under fire for failing to disclose taking luxury trips paid for by a billionaire Republican donor. How big of a problem is this for him, SCOTUS, and the judiciary?

Preet Preet Bharara, former US attorney for the Southern District of New York, says that Thomas probably didn't violate any actual rule related to conflicts of interest. But the optics are bad — especially coming on the heels of his wife's involvement with the Jan. 6 insurrectionists. "At a time when confidence and trust in the integrity of the court is low, it's not a great thing to do," Bhararara tells Ian Bremmer on GZERO World.

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US Cannot Issue New Debt Until Congress Acts To Raise Debt Limit | GZERO Media

GOP partisanship could trigger first-ever US default

Jon Lieber, head of Eurasia Group's coverage of political and policy developments in Washington, DC shares his perspective on US politics:

What does it mean that the US has hit its borrowing limit?

Well, the US this week hit its statutorily created debt limit, meaning that because of all the money that it borrowed during the course of the pandemic and the fact that it's borrowing hundreds of billions of dollars a year spending more than it takes in tax revenues, it hit its $31.5 trillion debt limit, which means that the US is now in a situation that it cannot issue new debt until Congress acts to raise the debt limit. However, Congress does not want to raise the debt limit, and there are a couple episodes during 2011 and 2013 where Congress came very, very close to the date where it would've potentially defaulted for the first time ever by not making payments to creditors.

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Zelensky Tells Congress US Aid Is Only Path to War Resolution | US Politics in :60 | GZERO Media

Zelensky tells Congress US aid is only path to war resolution

Clayton Allen, Director for the United States at Eurasia Group, shares his perspective on US politics.

How well President Zelensky did in his speech to a joint session of Congress earlier this evening?

Stylistically, Zelensky did well. He came to make an impassioned appeal and his speech fit that to a T. He contextualized Ukraine's struggle through comparison to major US battles like the Battle of the Bulge or Saratoga, something which clearly resonated with his audience. While he hit his mark tonight though, the impact of his speech on US policy might not be fully clear until the second half of next year. Congress is set to approve about $45 billion in additional aid for Ukraine in the coming days. Zelensky came to convince members, specifically the incoming Republican House majority that even more is needed.

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US Democracy After US Midterms: Polarized Voters & Trump's GOP | GZERO World with Ian Bremmer

US democracy after US midterms: polarized voters & Trump's GOP

What happened in the US midterm elections is becoming clear: the red wave-turned-ripple was only enough for Republicans to narrowly win the House, while the Democrats kept the Senate. But 'why' it happened is a harder question to answer.

On GZERO World, NPR White House correspondent Tamara Keith speaks to Ian Bremmer about all things midterms.

Her take on what saved the Dems? Abortion rights and protecting democracy turned out voters.

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Minimum Wage May Not Go Up, But Expect Stimulus Checks In April | US Politics :60 | GZERO Media

Minimum wage may not go up, but expect stimulus checks in April

Jon Lieber, Managing Director of the United States for the Eurasia Group, shares his insights on US politics in Washington, DC:

Is the minimum wage going to $15 an hour?

Probably not. The House of Representatives did include it in the stimulus bill that they're going to pass as soon as next week, but when it gets over to the Senate it's likely to either be stripped out altogether because of a provision of the reconciliation process known as the Byrd Rule, or you could see some moderate Senate Democrats try to push a compromise measure which would raise the minimum wage from $7.25 an hour to something closer to $10 or $11 an hour.

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Mitt Romney Isn’t the Future of the GOP. He’s the Past | The Red Pen | GZERO Media

Mitt Romney isn't the future of the GOP. He's the past.

In this edition of The Red Pen, we take a look at an editorial by the FT's Janan Ganesh, who argues that Mitt Romney represents a future for US conservatism post-Trump and is in a unique position to turn around the Republican Party. Ian Bremmer and Eurasia Group's Jon Lieber point out that the GOP is actually moving in a very different direction.

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Biden's Controversial Defense Pick May Need Bipartisan Support | US Politics :60 | GZERO Media

Biden's controversial Defense pick may need bipartisan support

Jon Lieber, Managing Director of the United States for the Eurasia Group, shares his insights on US politics this week:

First question. Why is Biden's nomination of Lloyd Austin for Secretary of Defense controversial?

It's controversial because Austin has not been out of the military for the required seven years that are needed, under the National Security Act of 1947, to ensure civilian control over the Department of Defense. As a result, he'll need a waiver from Congress in order to serve. This would be the second waiver that Congress has approved in the last four years with the first one coming for Trump's Secretary of Defense, General Jim Mattis. That was justified at the time because Congress was a little concerned about President Trump and really wanted somebody with a steady hand like Mattis on the till. But Biden has other options, including Michele Flournoy, who has a lot of supporters in Capitol Hill. And so, you're seeing some Democrats suggest they may not be willing to give a waiver this time. Austin may require a lot of Republican votes in order to get confirmed.

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