So far as House Speaker, Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) is not messing around. Ahead of a meeting with President Joe Biden, the newly-minted speaker laid out his terms.
The meeting between the new House speaker and the president, U.S. News reported, involved several requests to McCarthy regarding the debt ceiling and future budget issues.
"The White House released a memo saying Biden will have two questions for McCarthy. First, Biden will seek a commitment from McCarthy that he will ensure the country will pay its already-incurred debt, National Economic Council Director Brian Deese and Office of Management and Budget Director Shalanda Young said in the memo,” U.S. News noted.
It added: "Secondly, Biden wants to know when Republicans will release their budget, which would show what programs the new House majority would cut to reduce the deficit and the debt."
McCarthy made clear that his time was not to be wasted by engaging in any gamesmanship.
Mr. President: I received your staff’s memo. I’m not interested in political games. I’m coming to negotiate for the American people," McCarthy tweeted Tuesday morning.
Mr. President: I received your staff’s memo.
I’m not interested in political games.
I’m coming to negotiate for the American people.
— Kevin McCarthy (@SpeakerMcCarthy) January 31, 2023
Later, Speaker McCarthy posted a video explaining what he wanted President Biden to bring to the table.
— Rep. Dusty Johnson (@RepDustyJohnson) February 1, 2023
According to the Associated Press, on Wednesday during their meeting, not much in the way of progress was made, but the speaker referred to it as "a good first meeting."
Some already believe that McCarthy is winning the war of early negotiations. Rep. Andrew Clyde (R-GA) explained why he believes that's the case during a Newsmax TV interview.
"They're going to have President Biden at a place where he will negotiate."
Rep. Andrew Clyde [@Rep_Clyde] predicts that President Joe Biden will cave on debt ceiling concessions during a meeting with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy.
— NEWSMAX (@NEWSMAX) February 1, 2023
Whether or not McCarthy leads Republicans to a political victory over the debt ceiling situation is yet to be seen, but early indications seem to point to the new speaker not backing away from drawing hard lines in the sand.
Lets hope the good guys get an early win on this one.