Senate passes debt ceiling bill late Thursday

(ABC News) —The Senate on Thursday night passed legislation to lift the nation’s debt ceiling and stave off what would’ve been an economically disastrous default days before Monday’s deadline.

The final vote was 63-36.

The bill will now go to President Joe Biden’s desk for his signature.

Biden heralded the Senate vote passing the budget agreement as a “big win” for the economy.

Noting the bipartisan nature of the vote, Biden said, “Together, they demonstrated once more that America is a nation that pays its bills and meets its obligations — and always will be. I want to thank Leader [Chuck] Schumer and Leader [Mitch] McConnell for quickly passing the bill.”

“No one gets everything they want in a negotiation, but make no mistake: This bipartisan agreement is a big win for our economy and the American people,” the president added.

Biden said he looks forward to signing the bill as soon as possible, and that he will address the American people directly Friday.

The Fiscal Responsibility Act, the product of weeks of contentious negotiation between Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, will raise the $31.4 trillion debt limit through Jan. 1, 2025, while also implementing some caps on government spending and policy changes.

Republicans are touting its spending cuts while the White House argues it was able to protect major Democratic priorities like Medicare and Social Security, among other Biden-backed initiatives.

The compromise legislation was met with opposition from wings of both parties — hard-line Republicans and progressive Democrats — but has now passed both chambers with bipartisan support in the face of the alternative: an unprecedented default on the nation’s bills that would’ve likely cost millions of jobs and triggered a recession.



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