AGAWAM, Mass. (WWLP) – Both Democrats and Republicans continue to stall while working toward an agreement with the debt ceiling talks. 22News spoke to some Massachusetts federal lawmakers on Friday to get an update on the negotiations as the June 1st deadline approaches.

Earlier this week, a team of White House negotiators met with congressional leaders for what the Biden Administration is calling a “new phase” of debt ceiling negotiations. While both Democrats and Republicans acknowledge action needs to be taken before the June 1st deadline, they have been struggling to find a middle ground.

Congressman Richard Neal stated he sees a new wave of optimism in these recent talks, especially given what’s at stake, “Everybody knows that default is incomprehensible. That it would violate every norm that we have known about America’s credit standing in the world, and it would certainly violate the preeminent currency in the world: the American dollar.”

“This is an all-time high in recklessness and stupidity. It has to stop. Their whole focus is screwing poor people. I don’t want any part of it,” expressed Congressman Jim McGovern. He also said it was time for Democrats to stand their ground against proposed Republican budget cuts.

If the federal government doesn’t balance its budget, it could have several impacts, including affecting small businesses here in western Massachusetts.

“But I think one thing is very clear, is that small businesses need the stability and the assurance that the government is going to meet its obligations,” expressed the Regional Administrator of the Small Business Administration, Mike Vlacich.

President Biden has cut short his trip to Japan in order to continue working with Congress on putting together a plan that both parties can agree to. Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen also reiterated to Congress the risks of default in a letter she sent this week.