President Joe Biden delivered a commencement speech at Howard University, the alma mater of Vice President Kamala Harris.
The speech took place amidst debt ceiling negotiations, and President Biden emphasized the state of the country and the importance of Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs).
He praised Vice President Harris and echoed his familiar line of “Let’s finish the job,” teasing what his agenda might look like if he is reelected in 2024.
President Biden highlighted the need to reject political extremism and violence, protect fundamental rights and freedoms, provide affordable healthcare and housing, and stand against book banning and erasure of black history.
The speech comes at a critical time as talks between White House and Capitol Hill staffers are ongoing to address the looming debt ceiling crisis.
The details of a potential deal are being worked out, and the meeting between the President and top congressional leaders has been postponed and rescheduled.
The President insists on a clean debt ceiling raise without any additional conditions, while Republicans are demanding concessions in exchange.
The key question remains: Can these two parties find common ground before the upcoming meeting, and what is the timeline for addressing the debt ceiling deadline, which could result in a historic default if not met by June 1st? The White House and Capitol Hill staffers have a limited timeframe to resolve this issue, especially considering that President Biden is scheduled to leave for the G7 Summit in Asia shortly after.
With just a few days left in the month before the deadline, there is a lot of urgency to find a solution.