Biden delivers grim debt ceiling warning while sharply criticizing Republicans

Biden delivers grim debt ceiling warning while sharply criticizing Republicans

Hiroshima, Japan CNN --

Joe Biden warned Sunday that Republicans in Congress could use a default on the national debt limit to harm him politically. He also acknowledged the time was running out for unilateral actions by the government to increase the borrowing limit. This marked a dramatic shift of tone just days before the deadline set to reach an agreement.

Biden, who characterized GOP proposals as "extreme" and warned they could not gain enough support in Congress to be able to guarantee fellow world leaders in Japan for Group of 7 discussions that the US wouldn't default on its debts, said he was not able promise them.

He said, 'I cannot guarantee that they won't force a default through doing something outrageous.'

Biden's remarks as he was preparing to return to Washington were the latest sign that the White House remains far from the Republican-controlled Congress.

It was unclear whether the conversation with Kevin McCarthy, House Speaker of the House, would be able to break through the deadlock.

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He said, 'My guess would be that he will want to speak directly to me to make sure we are all on the same page.'

In exchange for raising the borrowing limit, Republicans are seeking to cut spending in the federal budget. Biden admitted on Sunday that he had a'significant disagreement' with Republicans about certain issues, but insisted that despite his willingness to cut spending, tax revenue was not off the table as part of a deal.

Biden stated at the press conference that'much of what they have already proposed is quite frankly unacceptable'. It's time that Republicans accept the fact that a bipartisan agreement cannot be reached solely based on partisan interests. ... They must also move.

He was asked if he would bear any responsibility for a default. Based on his response, he claimed that he is not responsible, but he did admit that "nobody will be blameless" as he implied that some of his political opponents could be encouraging defaults to undermine his reelection campaign.

He said: 'I believe there are MAGA Republicans who know what damage it will do to the economy. And because I am the president and a President is responsible for all, Biden would be the one to take the blame. That's the only way to ensure Biden's reelection.

Biden highlights the shortcomings of the 14th Amendment argument

Biden has also mentioned the 14th Amendment as a way to continue borrowing for the US government in the absence a deal. He suggests that he does have the power, but lacks the time to use the unilateral action.

"I believe we have the power." Could it be done in time to prevent it from being appealed and could it be invoked at all? Biden called the question whether an appeal can be resolved before the default deadline "unresolved."

When CNN's Phil Mattingly asked the President if he believed he could use the 14th Amendment to make a real and tangible decision, the President said that this maneuver would be unsuccessful given the limited time remaining.

We haven't come up with a unilateral action that would be successful in two or three weeks. This is the problem. It's now up to the lawmakers. He said, 'But my hope and intent is to solve this problem.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen warned that the US could default on their debts as early as June 1.

Standoff talks in Washington

McCarthy stated on Saturday that negotiators would not be able resume discussions with the Administration until Biden returned to Washington.

The California Republican stated that the White House had regressed. I don't believe we can move forward until President Obama returns.

Biden left Washington Wednesday to travel overseas for the Group of 7 Summit in Hiroshima. Biden will fly home to DC on Sunday. This is a shortened version to his original trip, which included stops in Australia and Papua New Guinea.

Biden asked that his team coordinate with the Speaker to schedule the conversation for Sunday morning Eastern Time. This would be their first conversation since the debt talks seemed to have stalled amid disagreements over spending limits.

Republican Rep. Dusty Johnson, South Dakota's Republican Representative, confirmed Saturday that the White House had made an offer to limit future spending levels at current levels. Johnson called this proposal 'unreasonable'.

Johnson, an ally of McCarthy and the chair of the Main Street Caucus (a centrist group), is among several key players that have been briefed on the talks by Republican negotiators.

Johnson stated that the negotiations did not go very well today. The White House's paper was a step backward. It undermined the progress made on Wednesday and Thursday. It has put negotiations at risk.

Johnson said, "We are real risks of default."