On Monday, Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) returned to the Capitol following a five-and-a-half-week absence caused by his recent accident. Following his return to Congress he is going to have to deal with a wide array of political problems, including the potential increase in the debt limit, the challenging 2024 GOP primary, and the division within the country on issues like abortion.
On his first Senate floor speech since his absence, McConnel said that it was “good to be back.” He proceeded to make a small joke about his recent accident which resulted in a mild concussion by stating that “this wasn’t the first time that being hardheaded has served me very well.”
Now that he is bad, McConnell is going to need to find a way to bridge the communication between President Biden and Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) regarding the country’s debt limit, which is set to expire this summer, potentially as early as June.
McConnell was a key part of the negotiations that helped the nation avoid going into default in 2011 and 2011. Lawmakers are also looking for ways to move past the current stalemate between Biden and McCarthy. So far, Biden has refused all negotiations with McCarthy stating that the debt ceiling should be raised without any concessions.
Biden and Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) are comfortable with refusing to negotiate with McCarthy as they expect him to move forward with the ceiling increase in an effort to avoid default as well as political and financial market pressure.