President Joe Biden on Friday decried the congressional debt ceiling fight as a “manufactured crisis” spurred by Republicans, the Washington Examiner reported.

“The last thing this country needs after all we’ve been through is a manufactured crisis,” Biden told reporters. “That’s what this is, a manufactured crisis … driven by the MAGA [Make America Great Again] Republicans in the Congress.”

“Next week, I’m going to reiterate to congressional leaders that they should do what every other Congress has done — that is pass the debt limit, avoid default,” he added.

The president’s comments arrive as he prepares to meet on May 9 with House Speaker Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.; House Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries, D-N.Y.; Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y.; and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.

Democrats have highlighted recent job report news from the Bureau of Labor Statistics that showed over 250,000 jobs added in April to gain the upper hand in ongoing negotiations with Republicans.

The report also showed the unemployment rate fell to 3.4%, the lowest level since 1969.

“We obviously have more work to do, but we’re trending in the right direction, and I think we’re making real progress,” Biden said. “And we’re doing it … by investing in America.”

McCarthy, meanwhile, led his chamber to pass the Limit, Save, Grow Act of 2023 last week. Although unlikely to pass the Senate or be signed by the president, it serves as the Republican framework for further talks.

“Limited government spending will reduce inflation and restore fiscal discipline in Washington,” McCarthy stated. “If Washington wants to spend more, it will have to come together and find savings elsewhere — just like every single household in America.”

The proposal raises the debt limit by over  $1 trillion, returns discretionary spending to 2022 levels, and limits the growth of spending to 1% annually.

Biden called out the proposal Friday as he pushed to raise the ceiling with no strings attached.

“Our MAGA Republicans in Congress are threatening to undo all this progress by letting us ‘default on the debt’ unless we agree to their demands,” Biden claimed. “The two are totally unrelated. Whether you pay the debt or not doesn’t have a damn thing to do with what your budget is.”

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