Former President Trump on Friday urged Republican lawmakers to dig in on debt ceiling talks just as negotiations with the White House were paused over disagreements.
“Republicans should not make a deal on the debt ceiling unless they get everything they want (Including the ‘kitchen sink’),” Trump wrote on Truth Social. “That’s the way the Democrats have always dealt with us. Do not fold!!!”
Trump’s post came as Rep. Garret Graves (R-La.), Speaker Kevin McCarthy’s (R-Calif.) top negotiator, emerged from a meeting with White House officials in the Capitol Friday voicing frustration that the sides had not made more progress and accusing the Democrats of being the cause.
The former president is still influential in parts of the House Republican conference in particular, and his plea for the GOP to avoid making a deal that is good for both sides could throw a wrench into talks.
Trump in a CNN town hall event last week had suggested Republicans could just let the country default, which experts have warned would bring catastrophic economic consequences.
Negotiators appointed by President Biden and McCarthy have been meeting this week in an attempt to reach an agreement and are expected to continue to talk in the coming days. Biden and McCarthy, along with other congressional leaders, are likely to reconvene next week when the president returns from Japan.
Friday’s development marked a start shift from just a day earlier, when the White House and McCarthy had signaled optimism about the direction of talks.
The Treasury Department has warned the U.S. could default on its debt if lawmakers do not act to raise the debt limit by June 1.