In a Jan. 27 letter, lawmakers supported legislation to require the U.S. Treasury to prioritize payments for the public debt, Social Security, Medicare, veterans benefits and military pay, if the government were to breach the current $31.4 trillion borrowing limit in coming months.
The lawmakers represent nearly half of the Senate’s 49 Republicans. A debt ceiling increase would require support from nine Republicans, 48 Democrats and three independents who caucus with Democrats to meet the Senate’s 60-vote filibuster rule for most legislation.
The one-page letter surfaced a day after Biden characterized Republicans as a party of “chaos and catastrophe” while criticizing their refusal to approve a debt ceiling increase without spending cuts.
The White House, which has repeatedly voiced opposition to debt ceiling negotiations, was not immediately available for comment.
The federal government neared its congressionally imposed $31.4 trillion…