(WASHINGTON) -- After meeting with his caucus Friday for nearly two hours, Senate Majority Leader, Harry Reid, D-NV., declared , “the only compromise that there is -- is mine” and blasted the latest bill from House Speaker John Boehner that is expected to be voted on in the House on Friday.
“It’s being jammed through that with all kinds of nontransparent dealings,” Reid said to reporters at the Ohio Clock on Friday. “They've basically given the right wing even more than what they had before.”
Sen. Charles Schumer, D-NY., called the revised Boehner plan an “absurd proposition.”
“To get his conservatives back on the reservation at this point, he's adding all kinds of poison pills to his plan,” Schumer said. “His new plan requiring that each house of Congress not vote on, but pass, a balanced budget amendment before any debt ceiling is raised will guarantee a default.”
Reid said that his door is still open to McConnell to sit down and negotiate -- and that he already has some Republican ideas that he wants to add in to make it more acceptable when he files cloture on his offer. The Majority Leader added that he has not taken his eyes off the McConnell fall back proposal, a hint that the final product could very well include elements of McConnell’s “last choice” option.
But Democratic leadership and, Reid says, his whole caucus, is remaining firm: “there will be no agreement if it’s a short-term extension.”
“We hope a deal can be had by day's end, but if not, Senator Reid is right to move ahead with his plan, which already is a compromise,” Schumer said Friday. “This would set up a vote just after midnight on Saturday night. That vote will be the vote to avert default. A ‘yes’ vote is a vote to be responsible. A ‘no’ vote will be a vote for economic catastrophe.”
Schumer said that the proverbial ball is in Sen. Mitch McConnell’s court.
“Leader McConnell has kept a low profile in recent days out of loyalty to Speaker Boehner, but he now needs to step up and help move the process forward. The time for providing cover for the Speaker is over. A nation hangs in the balance. We need Senator McConnell to become engaged. The ball is in his court and only in his court.”
Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio
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