House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) challenged President Obama today to take a leadership role in his request for an increase in the national debt limit. Boehner said a proposal that imposes job-crushing tax hikes or fails to make spending cuts in excess of any debt limit increase will hurt job growth. Boehner also said such a proposal won’t be accepted by the American people – and can’t pass the House.
Here is some of the coverage of Boehner’s statement:
- NO JOB-CRUSHING TAX HIKES: “House Speaker John Boehner delivered a direct challenge to the White House and said flatly that the House cannot pass a deficit-reduction deal that incorporates any tax increases. ‘The president and his party may want a debt limit increase that includes tax hikes, but such a proposal cannot pass the House,’ Boehner said in a statement.” (Boehner challenges Obama on debt deal, tax increases, MSNBC, 6/24/11)
- SPENDING CUTS MUST EXCEED DEBT LIMIT INCREASE: “‘The president and his party may want a debt limit increase without spending cuts that exceed the amount of the debt limit hike, but such a proposal cannot pass the House. The president and his party may want a debt limit increase without budget reforms that will restrict Washington’s ability to spend in the future, but such a proposal cannot pass the House. These are the realities of the situation.’ Boehner added that any deal to increase the country’s $14.3 trillion debt limit ‘is only going to happen via a measure that meets these tests.’“ (Boehner: Tax hikes in a debt deal proposal ‘cannot pass’ House, Washington Post, 6/24/11)
- A PROPOSAL THAT FAILS THESE TESTS CAN’T PASS THE HOUSE: “Any deal must include budget reforms, spending cuts that are larger than the debt-limit increase and must not include tax hikes, [Boehner] said. An increase to the debt limit will only happen ‘via a measure that meets those tests,’ Boehner said in a statement. ‘If the president puts forth such a proposal, he has my word that the House will act on it,’ Boehner said. ‘But a measure that fails to meet these tests cannot pass the House.’” (Speaker Boehner: Debt-ceiling deal with tax hikes ‘cannot pass’, The Hill, 6/24/11)
- PRESIDENT OBAMA MUST LEAD: “A day after talks stalled on a debt-reduction deal, Boehner issued a statement reinforcing the GOP position in stark terms. The speaker called on Obama to ‘lead’ and take part in the negotiations.” (Boehner to Obama: Tax hikes in debt deal ‘cannot pass,’ USA Today, 6/24/11)
- THE HOUSE WILL STAND WITH THE AMERICAN PEOPLE: “House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) firmly reiterated the position of his caucus and called on President Obama to step up and show some leadership if he wants a deal. ‘[The American people] understand that a debt limit deal that raises taxes and fails to rein in spending will hurt our economy and further impede job creation,’ he added. ‘And since January, I have been clear: the new majority in the House will stand with the people.’“ (Boehner Puts His Foot Down in Debt Talks,National Review, 6/24/11)
Earlier this month, more than 150 economists signed a statement agreeing that any debt limit increase should “include spending cuts and reforms that are greater than the accompanying increase in debt authority.” The economists argue that doing otherwise “would harm private-sector job growth.” And Speaker Boehner has repeatedly said “tax hikes are off the table” because tax hikes threaten jobs.
“If the president and his allies want the debt limit increased,” says Boehner, it can only happen if his proposal doesn’t raise taxes and cuts more spending than it increases the debt limit.
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