Schumer’s Hypocritical Debt Limit History

In 2017, Sen. Chuck Schumer Talked About Using The Debt Limit ‘As Leverage,’ In Stark Contrast To His Categorical Assertions Today That ‘Using It As A Bargaining Chip’ ‘Should Be Off The Table’


SEN. CHUCK SCHUMER (D-NY): “[T]hey know there is no reason—no reason, no argument, no logic—to justify flipping your position 180 degrees and calling it some kind of principle. It is not. It is utterly craven …” (Sen. Schumer, Remarks, 9/21/2020)


In 2017, Schumer Bragged About Democrats Using The Debt Limit 'As Leverage' In Future Spending Negotiations

SCHUMER: “What’s our leverage?... We only had one thing as leverage at that point, which was the debt ceiling.” (“‘The New Washington’: How Schumer’s Power Play Led to a Deal With Trump,” The New York Times, 9/09/2017)

  • “In concert with Representative Nancy Pelosi of California, the House Democratic leader, Mr. Schumer began formulating a plan to apply pressure, jettisoning the idea of backing a straightforward, or ‘clean,’ debt limit measure and settling instead on the idea of a short-term three-month increase. They saw that model as a way to gain muscle in coming negotiations toward a more comprehensive year-end legislative package. With another debt limit deadline looming, Mr. Trump and Republican leaders would again need Democratic votes.” (“‘The New Washington’: How Schumer’s Power Play Led to a Deal With Trump,” The New York Times, 9/09/2017)

QUESTION: “You talked a lot in the past about the dangers of uncertainty for the economy. Wouldn't a longer-term debt ceiling have created less uncertainty?”
SCHUMER: “No. … But the bottom line is we have a lot of issues to come together on. It -- you almost always works out best in a bipartisan way when we can do those issues together. And so having the debt ceiling and funding of government expire at the same time gives another ample opportunity for bipartisanship, not for one party jamming its choices down the throats of the other.” (Sen. Schumer, Press Conference, 9/06/2017)


Schumer Now: ‘There Should Be No Political Brinkmanship With The Debt Limit. It’s Reckless’

SCHUMER: “I want to be clear that the debt ceiling is a subject of the highest consequence and using it as a bargaining chip, using it as brinksmanship, as hostage taking… is exceedingly dangerous.” (Sen. Schumer, Floor Remarks, 1/25/2023)

SCHUMER: “There should be no political brinkmanship with the debt limit. It’s reckless … to try and use the full faith and credit of the United States as a political bargaining chip.” (Sen. Schumer, Press Release, 1/17/2023)

SCHUMER: “… brinksmanship, hostage-taking, default on the debt should be off the table.” (Sen. Schumer, Remarks, 1/23/2023)



Related Issues: Senate Democrats, Debt And Deficits