10 things you need to know today: May 17, 2023

Biden, congressional leaders hint at progress toward raising debt ceiling, N.C.'s GOP-dominated legislature overrides Democratic governor's veto of abortion restrictions, and more

Kevin McCarthy speaking at the U.S. Capitol
President Biden called conversations with congressional leaders on the debt ceiling 'good and productive'
(Image credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images)

1. Biden and congressional leaders express optimism on debt ceiling

President Biden met with congressional leaders at the White House Tuesday to resume discussions on raising the debt ceiling to avert a potential catastrophic default as soon as June. Biden called the meeting "good and productive." House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said Republicans and Democrats remained "far apart," but were hopeful progress was emerging toward a deal. Biden and other Democrats want to raise the borrowing cap without conditions. Republicans are demanding spending cuts in exchange for raising the debt limit. White House officials said Biden would still go to a Group of Seven meeting in Japan but would shorten what was supposed to be a seven-day trip by canceling several stops to allow more time for talks.

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Harold Maass, The Week US

Harold Maass is a contributing editor at The Week. He has been writing for The Week since the 2001 debut of the U.S. print edition and served as editor of TheWeek.com when it launched in 2008. Harold started his career as a newspaper reporter in South Florida and Haiti. He has previously worked for a variety of news outlets, including The Miami Herald, ABC News and Fox News, and for several years wrote a daily roundup of financial news for The Week and Yahoo Finance.