Skip to main content

Newt Gingrich

Former House Speaker; Chairman of Gingrich 360

View Video Library
Share
Opinion

What are the House GOP’s next moves after debt ceiling deal?

Jul 12, 2023

Share

In May, President Biden and House Speaker Kevin McCarthy managed to prevent a default on the nation’s debt by reaching a last-minute agreement to suspend the debt ceiling until 2025 in exchange for two years of spending caps. Now, as budget season commences, lawmakers are faced with the responsibility of passing spending bills to ensure smooth functioning of the government.

With Republicans in charge of the House, their main goal is to cut spending more than what is outlined in the debt ceiling bill. On the flip side, Democrats in control of the Senate want to stick to the spending limits agreed upon.

Straight Arrow News contributor Newt Gingrich has some advice for Speaker McCarthy and his fellow House Republicans on what to do next.

Speaker Kevin McCarthy and the House Republicans are at a real crossroads. They followed a strategy, a very sound strategy, of negotiating from strength. They found President Biden had adopted a position of not having any kind of spending cuts on the debt ceiling bill, and then only one out of every four Americans agreed with President Biden. Three out of four Americans thought either there shouldn’t be a bill at all, or that there should definitely be spending cuts on that bill. 

The result was: Biden’s position was untenable. Then Biden went a step further and said he wouldn’t negotiate at a time when 70% of American people wanted the Republicans and the president to negotiate. 

Ultimately, after 104 days of Speaker McCarthy going out to the press every single day saying, “Hey, I want to get this done, I want to avoid a debt ceiling crisis, I don’t know why the president won’t negotiate,” Biden finally collapsed, and, in fact, they negotiated.

It was a small step in the right direction. It did cut spending for the first time ever on a debt ceiling bill. It had changes towards work requirements for welfare, it eliminated the first year of hiring more IRS agents; it had a number of things that were reasonably good. 

But where do they go from here? We learned from watching that particular fight that the margins are really narrow. Speaker McCarthy can only lose four members and still have a majority on his side in the House. The Senate Republicans had totally followed McCarthy’s lead, and, which I thought, frankly, was remarkable, and I was all in favor of. But the question now is, where are they as we go forward?


Speaker Kevin McCarthy and the House Republicans are at a real crossroads. They followed a strategy, a very sound strategy of negotiating from strength. 

 

They found President Biden and adopted a position of not having any kind of spending cuts on the debt ceiling bill. And then only one out of every four Americans agreed with President Biden, three out of four Americans thought either there shouldn’t be a bill at all, or that there should definitely be spending cuts on that bill. 

 

The result was, Biden’s position was untenable. Then Biden went a step further and said he wouldn’t negotiate at a time when 70% of American people wanted the Republicans and the president to negotiate. 

 

Ultimately, after 104 days of speaker McCarthy, going out to the press every single day saying, hey,

I want to get this done. I want to avoid a debt ceiling crisis. I don’t know why the President won’t negotiate. 

 

He finally Biden finally collapsed. And in fact, they negotiated, it was a small step in the right direction. 

 

It did cut spending for the first time ever on a debt ceiling bill. And that had changes towards work requirements for welfare. It eliminated the first year of hiring more IRS agents, that a number of things that were reasonably good. 

 

But where do they go from here? We learned watching that particular fight, that the margins are really narrow. 

 

Speaker McCarthy can only lose four members and still have a majority on his side in the House. The Senate Republicans had totally followed McCarthy’s lead, and which I thought, frankly, was remarkable. And I was all in favor of. 

 

But the question now is, where are they as we go forward? Speaker McCarthy has taken a position which I agree with, that the agreement made on the debt ceiling was a ceiling, not a basement, that is when they said we’re not going to spend more than x. That didn’t mean we had to actually spend X, we could spend less. 

 

And so the House Republicans Appropriations Committee, has to come out and said, We’re going to spend about $100 billion less new domestic discretionary spending next year. 


Now, the Senate Republicans don’t necessarily agree, I would say the Senate Republicans are divided, with about half of them wanting to spend a lot more money, and half of them being with the House Republicans and spending less money. 


Of course, the Democrats are all for spending more money. And President Biden wants to spend more money. So the maneuvering and the debate over the next four or five months is going to be very intense, and very serious. I think, based on the lessons that I outlined, in my new book, marched to the majority, which describes how we won a majority for the first time in 40 years, how we use the Contract with America to rally the country. 

 
And how we then negotiated with President Bill Clinton, to get welfare reform, the largest capital gains tax cut in history and the only four balanced budgets in our lifetime. 

 

When you look at that book, a march the majority and say to yourself, What are the lessons for the House Republicans, I think the key one is pick some things that cannot be defended. 


I personally would start with the FBI request for a $3.5 billion headquarters, a building larger than the Pentagon.I doubt a 5% of American people think that the FBI deserves a building bigger than the Pentagon. And it’s exactly the wrong direction for the FBI to go in. 

 

We don’t need more centralized police power in Washington. We need most of the FBI as activities to be fighting crime, how to in the cities, where the crime occurs, 

 

not to be sitting in bureaucracies in Washington, DC, 

 

but I would look through our I find 1015 20 examples that are indefensible. I would say, you know, do you really want us to insist on spending this money. And I think you’d find the American people would rally we know that 


about 70% of the American people think we’re spending too much in favor cutting spending, including spending, it affects them. 

 

We also know that about the American people, on average, according to Gallup, believe that 50% of all federal spending is waste. 

 

So somebody comes out and says, Oh, we can’t cut anything. I think we’ll find themselves in a very, very difficult situation.

 

That’s why I would advocate that we have a 

 

program where the House Republicans focus on highlighting the waste, highlighting the incompetence, highlighting the programs that make no sense and then targeting their spending cuts so that they’re very, very hard to stop. That would be the key, I think, to a successful campaign between now and the end of the year.

 

Video Library

Latest Commentary

We know it is important to hear from a diverse range of observers on the complex topics we face and believe our commentary partners will help you reach your own conclusions.

The commentaries published in this section are solely those of the contributors and do not reflect the views of Straight Arrow News.


Latest Opinions

In addition to the facts, we believe it’s vital to hear perspectives from all sides of the political spectrum. We hope these different voices will help you reach your own conclusions.

The opinions published in this section are solely those of the contributors and do not reflect the views of Straight Arrow News.

Weekly Voices

Left Opinion Right Opinion

Monday

Left Opinion Right Opinion

Tuesday

Left Opinion Right Opinion

Wednesday

Left Opinion Right Opinion

Thursday

Left Opinion Right Opinion

Friday

Left Opinion Right Opinion