The U.S. debt limit will be suspended for about 13 months under a measure President Barack Obama expects to sign into law.
The Senate cleared the debt-limit suspension bill on a “55-43 party-line vote” yesterday that “will allow the U.S. to meet its obligations until at least March 15, 2015,” or more than four months after the November midterm elections, Bloomberg’s Kathleen Hunter reported.
Earlier yesterday, the Senate voted 67-31 to invoke cloture, or end debate, on the bill. Twelve Republicans sided with all 55 members of the Democratic caucus to advance the bill.
Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky and Minority Whip John Cornyn of Texas “walked to the rostrum together to cast their votes in favor of cloture,” Hunter and James Rowley reported for Bloomberg Government. Then McConnell and Cornyn voted no on final passage in a party-line vote against the measure.
The Senate votes came a day after the House passed the legislation on a 221-201 vote, with 28 Republicans including Speaker John Boehner backing the measure.
The government will have more time after March 2015 to raise the debt limit next because of a surge in income tax payments around April 15, when federal returns are due, Bloomberg’s Richard Rubin reported.
The federal borrowing limit “came back into force on Feb. 8 after it was suspended in October” as part of a law that ended a 16-day partial government shutdown, Cameron Leuthy reported in a BGOV Bill Summary. “Since Feb. 8, government borrowing has been kept within the limit through ‘extraordinary measures’ taken by the Treasury Department,” Leuthy wrote.