Former US president Donald Trump at Trump Turnberry golf course, in South Ayrshire, during his visit to the UK.
Steve Welsh | Pa Images | Getty Images
Former President Donald Trump on Wednesday urged Republican lawmakers to let america default on its debt if Democrats don’t conform to spending cuts.
“I say to the Republicans on the market — congressmen, senators — in the event that they don’t offer you massive cuts, you are going to must do a default,” said Trump, who’s again running for president. “And I do not believe they’ll do a default because I feel the Democrats will absolutely cave, will absolutely cave because you don’t need to have that occur. Nevertheless it’s higher than what we’re doing straight away because we’re spending money like drunken sailors.”
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When pushed by CNN anchor Kaitlan Collins to make clear his remarks, Trump said: “Well, you may as well do it now, because you will do it later. Because we’ve got to save lots of this country. Our country is dying. Our country is being destroyed by silly people, by very silly people.”
Trump made the remarks during a CNN town hall during which he defended his supporters who staged a violent riot on the U.S. Capitol in January 2021 and mocked the author E. Jean Carroll a day after a jury found him accountable for sexually abusing and defaming her.
Trump is the leading contender for the 2024 Republican presidential nomination. He would likely look to make use of a default to his political advantage were he to face President Joe Biden in a rematch next 12 months.
His comments got here weeks before the U.S. is projected to run out of money to pay its bills unless Congress addresses the debt limit. Since January, the U.S. government has taken extraordinary measures to avoid default.
A default would trigger chaos in markets and lead to tens of millions of job losses, in keeping with analysts and economists. Republicans voted to lift the debt ceiling 3 times during Trump’s presidency.
Trump’s words could encourage his many GOP supporters within the House to harden their stance against raising the debt limit without corresponding spending cuts. Biden has said he won’t negotiate over raising the debt limit, although he said he’s open to discussing ways to cut back spending in a separate context.
Biden and the highest 4 congressional leaders, including Trump supporter House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., will meet again to debate the debt ceiling on Friday. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen has said the U.S. government could hit the debt limit as soon as June 1.