WASHINGTON — Both of Georgia’s U.S. senators voted in favor of legislation that will lift the nation’s debt ceiling through early 2025, avoiding a financial default that threatened international crisis.
Sens. Jon Ossoff and Raphael Warnock, both Atlanta Democrats, each said their concerns about some of the provisions insisted upon by Republicans did not supersede the need to suspend the debt ceiling ahead of Monday’s deadline so the government could continue to pay its bills.
“Today the Congress acted to prevent a catastrophic default, which would have plunged the U.S. and global economies into recession and severely damaged families and businesses in Georgia, across the country, and around the world,” Ossoff said in a statement after the vote.
The final vote on the Senate floor took place late Thursday after members considered a series of amendments, none of which got the votes needed to be incorporated into the legislation. The legislation, which needed 60 votes for approval, then passed 63-36.
President Joe Biden is expected to quickly sign the bill into law.
As in the House, conservatives Republicans and progressive Democrats both opposed the deal for different reasons.
Warnock said he agreed with fellow Democrats who said Republicans should never had insisted on tying a debt limit increase to cuts in federal spending, which he described as “brinksmanship.”
“And in this case, not only do they engage in the politics of brinksmanship, they use poor people as pawns and vulnerable people as hostages,” he said. “What we cannot afford to do is to default and to threaten the full faith and credit of the United States government.”
In a statement after the vote, Biden praised the Senate for moving quickly to pass the bill after Wednesday’s house vote.
“No one gets everything they want in a negotiation, but make no mistake: This bipartisan agreement is a big win for our economy and the American people,” he said.
The White House said the president would address the nation at 7 p.m. Friday.