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House Speaker Kevin McCarthy unveiled the House GOP’s 320-page proposal on Wednesday to raise the federal debt ceiling by $1.5 trillion in exchange for slashing federal spending, an opening bid for debt talks with the White House that have yet to materialize.

The proposal would raise the cap on how much the government could borrow to meet expenses through March 31, 2024. It pairs the increase with spending cuts that Mr. McCarthy said would save taxpayers $4.5 trillion over the next decade.

“Now that we’ve introduced a clear plan for Responsible debt limit increase … President Biden has a choice,” said Mr. McCarthy, California Republican. “Come to the table and stop playing partisan political games, or cover his ears, refuse to negotiate and risk bumbling his way into the first default in our nation’s history.”

Mr. McCarthy introduced the proposal at virtually the same time the president was giving another speech decrying the Republicans for delaying a move on the debt ceiling. Mr. Biden called the GOP‘s proposals “whacko notions.”

The bill cuts federal spending by $130 billion for the upcoming fiscal year and limits future budget growth to 1% annually over the next decade. It rescinds President Biden’s student loan forgiveness program and $90.5 billion unspent COVID-19 relief.

The legislation would also repeal major portions of Mr. Biden’s $739 billion climate change law, including $70 billion in IRS funding and more than $369 billion in green-energy tax credits.

“President Biden’s reckless spending created record inflation, made us more dependent on China, and undermined Social Security and Medicare,” Mr. McCarthy said.

Beyond cutting spending and restructuring the social safety net, the legislation imposes work requirements for individuals receiving federal entitlements programs, including food stamps and Medicaid. It would also increase the age limit for work requirements from 49 to 55.

Loading up the bill is an overhaul of the nation’s energy-permitting laws and provisions requiring congressional approval for any new regulations with an economic impact of more than $100 million per year.

Mr. McCarthy unveiled the legislation — dubbed the “Limit, Save, Grow Act” — just as Mr. Biden was preparing to give his speech at a union hall in Maryland. The president’s remarks, which were provided to the press ahead of time, were set to focus on the looming fiscal crisis if Republicans didn’t acquiesce to a clean debt-limit hike.

“We’ve never ever defaulted on the debt,” Mr. Biden said. “It would destroy this economy.”

Mr. Biden has refused to negotiate with House Republicans for months, arguing that Republicans needed to make their proposed spending cuts transparent before discussions could start in earnest. The president seemed to reverse course a bit on Wednesday, saying that Republicans had to commit themselves to not defaulting on the debt.

“Take default off the table,” Mr. Biden said. “And let’s have a real serious detailed conversation about how to grow the economy, lower costs, and reduce the deficit.”

Mr. McCarthy hopes to pass his debt limit bill before Congress adjourns at the end of April for a recess. As part of that timeline, GOP leaders are planning to assemble the legislation within the House Rules Committee.

Republicans recognize the proposal is not a final product, but hope its passage will force Mr. Biden to kick-start negotiations in earnest.

“That is our first offer in this debt ceiling negotiation,” House Financial Services Committee Chairman Patrick McHenry, North Carolina Republican, said. “We’ll see if the president’s willing to come to the table and negotiate as previous presidents have.”

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