GOP Senate to Force Dems to Raise Debt Ceiling Solo? They're toying with the idea of withholding all support By Mark Russell, Newser Staff Posted Apr 12, 2011 7:36 AM CDT 36 comments Comments Sen. John Cornyn has said spending reform is needed to get Republican cooperation on lifting the debt ceiling. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite) (Newser) – With the United States poised to crash into its $14.294 trillion debt ceiling no later than May 16, Senate Republicans are considering letting Democrats raise it all on their own, with a straight party vote, reports the Huffington Post. Republicans have been insisting on spending cuts and reforms in order to lift the debt ceiling, while the White House has been trying to keep the issues separate. The Republican thinking is that if Democrats insist on getting their way, then they can raise the limit on their own—and take all the political heat on their own, too. "Because unless 51 Democrats want to vote to raise the debt ceiling and all the Republicans vote against it, they’re going to have to give us something in the way of a systemic reform," said Sen. John Cornyn of Texas, who told the Huffington Post the GOP wants to squeeze three things out of the showdown: a balanced budget amendment to the Constitution, passage of a spending cap bill, and legislation that establishes a plan to deal with the nation’s debt and deficits. And the White House has been showing signs of movement, reports the Wall Street Journal, which notes after long emphasizing that the debt-ceiling vote would be a standalone piece of legislation, it's now indicating that it wouldn't nix the idea of coupling it with deficit-reducing cuts.