Battle over debt ceiling moves to Senate, after House passes bipartisan bill

The threat of the United States defaulting on its debts brought House Republicans and Democrats together to get the Biden-McCarthy compromise bill passed by a vote of 314 to 117 Wednesday night. 

Opposition emerged from both progressives and hard-line conservatives, however, and there could be similar opposition when the bill goes to the Senate.

"The big problem here in the legislation is that Republicans got very little. And I think Democrats got effectively everything that they asked for," said Ohio Senator J.D. Vance, who indicated he likely will vote no on the bill in the Senate. 

Progressive Senator Bernie Sanders of Vermont also said in a post on social media that he will most likely vote against the bill. 

"I cannot, in good conscience, vote for the debt ceiling deal," Sanders said.

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy touted the passage of the bill as a victory. 

"Tonight, we all made history because this is the biggest cut and savings this Congress has ever voted for," McCarthy said.

There were 71 House Republicans, however, who revolted and refused to support the bill. In the end, it was House Democrats who pushed the deal over the finish line. 

McCarthy promised Republican voters that he wasn't finished fighting. 

"It wasn't an easy fight. I had people on both sides upset. But I was focused on you. and I will stay focus on you because I'm waking up tomorrow and going after everything we didn't get today," McCarthy said, adding that he was considering forming a bipartisan committee that would look for areas to cut in the budget and be able to bring changes to the House floor directly for an up or down vote.

Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi of San Francisco and other Bay Area representatives said the bill had flaws, but they voted yes.

"It preserves not only key programs like social security, Medicare, and Medicaid. It also maintains virtually all House Democrats achievement in the last two years," said Rep. Mike Thompson of Napa.

"There's some parts of this legislation I don't like, but really, it's do you pay America’s bills or do you not," said Rep. Eric Swalwell of Castro Valley.

Bay Area representatives Anna Eshoo, John Garamendi, Zoe Lofgren, Kevin Mullin. Nancy Pelosi , Eric Swalwell, and Mike Thompson voted yes.

Representatives Mark DeSaulnier, Jared Huffman, Ro Khanna, and Barbara Lee voted no.

Progressives said they oppose parts of the bill such as cutting IRS funds intended to stop tax fraud and raising the work requirement for food stamp recipients to age 54.

"I believe that I have to stand with people who are the losers on this and fight like you would not believe on the Appropriations Committee now to restore some of these cuts," said Rep. Lee.

The U.S. could default on its debts as soon as Monday June 5th if Congress does not raise the nation's debt ceiling.