U.S. Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid says he has accepted a deal with Republicans to keep the government from defaulting on its $14.3 trillion debt.
A Reid spokesman said Sunday he will support the deal as long as other Senate Democrats join him.
The leader of the majority party in the U.S. Senate spoke during a day of major talks and negotiations between Democrats and Republicans, two days before the United States reaches its debt limit and starts defaulting.
Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell told reporters earlier that a compromise was “really really close.” But it is not clear what the final bill will look like.
U.S. and overseas markets are nervously watching developments in Washington. Failure to reach agreement could set back a shaky world economy still struggling to recover from recession.
U.S. stock markets suffered their worst losses of the year last week and the value of the dollar slumped.
All sides agree on the need to cut spending and raise the debt ceiling so that the country can keep borrowing money. But they have been squabbling for weeks on what to cut and how fast those cuts should be made.
Past increases in the debt limit have been routine. But Republicans in Congress this time have demanded huge spending cuts with no increase in taxes. Democrats and President Barack Obama have been insisting on tax increases, but are reported willing to drop that demand in order to reach a deal.