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Entries in Cut Cap and Balance Act (6)

Friday
Jul222011

Boehner: 'Democrats Who Run Washington Have Done Nothing'

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Speaker John Boehner went to the House floor Friday afternoon to blow off some steam over the Senate’s refusal to take up the Republican’s Cut Cap and Balance plan, announcing that the House has fulfilled its duty while “Democrats who run Washington have done nothing.”

“The Senate majority leader [Harry Reid] says that they won’t offer a plan to cut spending or a plan to raise the debt limit. Frankly that’s irresponsible,” Boehner, R-Ohio, said. “Where’s their plan? President Obama talks about being the adult in the room. Where’s his plan to cut spending and to raise the debt limit? Listen, we’re in the fourth quarter here. We’re fighting for jobs, we’re fighting for the country’s future and we’re fighting for the American people.”

Boehner once again reiterated that the House already acted to increase the debt limit earlier this week through the Cut, Cap and Balance plan, which Senate Democrats successfully voted to kill earlier Friday in a party-line vote.

With less than 11 days left until the federal government is expected to default on its debt obligations, Boehner placed the onus on President Obama and Senate Democrats to make the next move.

“We’ve done our job,” Boehner said. “The Democrats who run Washington have done nothing. They can’t stop spending the American people’s money. They won’t and they have refused.”

Boehner said that “there’s a huge gulf between Washington, D.C., and the American people,” and suggested that some lawmakers in the nation’s capital are out of touch with the financial struggles of every day Americans.

“They’re dealing with tough times. They’re struggling to pay their bills, and they look to Washington and they see politicians who can’t stop spending money -- their money!” Boehner exclaimed. “We’re broke and we need to stop the out of control spending spree that’s going on in Washington, D.C.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Friday
Jul222011

Cut, Cap & Balance Killed in the Senate; Reid Gives Senate Weekend Off

ABC News(WASHINGTON) -- The Cut, Cap and Balance Act was killed as expected by a party-line vote in the Senate on Friday.

“We're going to dispose of this legislation as it needs to be so President Obama and the Speaker can move forward on a matter that will have some revenue in it and send it over here and we can move forward to complete our work to make sure that we don't default on our debt,” Reid said following the vote.

Earlier in the week Reid had announced that the Senate would be in session every day -- including weekends -- until Congress sends legislation to the president.  Reid even ridiculed the House of Representatives for being out of session this weekend.

But things have changed since Monday when he made that announcement. The talks are mainly going on between President Obama and Speaker of the House John Boehner and Reid announced Friday that the Senate will not be in session this weekend. The next roll call vote will be on Monday at 5:30 pm.

“Circumstances have changed,” Reid said noting that the legislation will now have to originate in the House so the Senate won’t have to be in and working this weekend. “Based on these changed circumstances, it is no longer the case. So at the close of business today, the senate will be out until Monday.”

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Thursday
Jul212011

Timing Is Everything: Reid Forces a Vote Early on Cut, Cap & Balance

US Senate(WASHINGTON) -- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced on the Senate floor that he will force a “motion to table” --  i.e. a motion to kill -- the Cut, Cap and Balance Act on Friday, after a cloture vote had been set for Saturday.

“I think this piece of legislation is about as weak and senseless as anything that has ever come on this Senate floor,” Reid said on the Senate floor Thursday evening. “I am not going to waste the Senate's time day after day on this piece of legislation.”

The motion only needs 51 votes for it to be approved. If the motion is approved, Cut, Cap & Balance would be tabled.  This move is important in the overall schedule as leaders scramble to not only broker a final deal to raise the nation’s debt ceiling but also procedurally get a deal before the Aug. 2 deadline for action.

Democrats have railed against the act, which passed in the House on Tuesday, all week, saying that it is a waste of time for something that has no chance of passing in the Democrat-controlled Senate and that the president has said he will veto. So Reid has pushed the vote one day early.

“I feel confident that this legislation will be disposed of one way or the other,” Reid said.

Knowing that Senate Republicans have fought this week just for the opportunity to debate this act, Reid said that they can “debate it to their heart's content” Thursday night and into Friday for a period of time. But that’s it -- there will be a vote at some point Friday.

Senator Mike Lee, R-Utah, likened the argument that an act that could fail doesn’t deserve debate to questioning holding the Super Bowl “when you’ve got one team that’s expected to beat the other one.”

“But it's even worse, because what happens is that when we vote, we're held accountable.  If we don't vote, we can't be held accountable,” said Lee.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Wednesday
Jul202011

Senate to Vote On Cut, Cap & Balance Act Saturday

Comstock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- The Senate will hold a cloture vote on the motion to proceed this Saturday on the Cut, Cap and Balance Act, which the House of Representatives passed Tuesday night.

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., announced on the Senate floor Wednesday evening that the vote will occur on Saturday morning, but he still “hopes” that a deal could be worked out for a vote sooner.  

But Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., took to the floor immediately afterward and said that he welcomes a debate over Cut, Cap and Balance and that he is looking forward to a Saturday vote.

The plan has no hopes of passing in the Democrat-controlled Senate.  Democrats skewered the plan Wednesday on Capitol Hill, calling it “political theater,” a “waste of time,” and a “show vote,” and announced it dead on arrival after the House sent it over this week.

“What a sham! What a scam!” Senator Mikulski, D-Md.,  said Wednesday, “I'd be tempted to just blow it off if it were not so cruel, stupid and dangerous.  It's cruel because it invents new rules of how we're going to calculate Social Security, what we're going to do to Medicare. It's stupid because it doesn't solve our problems. And it's dangerous because it could bring our economy down. It does cut, cap and kill Medicare, but it could very well kill the future of our country.”

Democrats have argued that voting on something that everyone knows won’t pass in the Senate, and that the president has said he will veto if it reaches his desk, is a waste of time as the clock ticks closer to August 2 to reach a deal on raising the debt ceiling.

The plan would cut total spending by $111 billion in FY 2012. The legislation would also cap total federal spending by creating a “glide path” that caps spending at 22.5 percent of GDP next year, and gradually decreases spending levels over 10 years levels until locking in at 19.9 percent of GDP in 2021 and beyond.

The legislation would require that Congress pass a Balanced Budget Amendment (BBA), and it would need to be sent to the states for ratification before the president’s request for a debt limit increase is granted.

Senate Majority Leader Reid this week announced that the Senate will stay in session everyday -- including weekends -- until Congress sends President Obama legislation to avoid a defaulting on the nation’s debts.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Tuesday
Jul192011

House Passes Cut, Cap & Balance Act

Architect of the Capitol(WASHINGTON) -- The House of Representatives passed the Cut, Cap and Balance Act on Tuesday night 234-190 in a vote divided largely down partisan lines.

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, praised the House for passing the legislation, which he noted will “stop the Washington spending binge and rein in the deficits that are hurting job growth.”

“Americans are still asking, ‘Where are the jobs?’  And while President Obama simply talks tough about cutting spending, House Republicans are taking action. ‘Cut, Cap, and Balance’ is exactly the kind of ‘balanced’ approach the White House has asked for,” Boehner said in a statement following the bill’s passage. “It provides President Obama with the debt limit increase he’s requested while making real spending cuts now and restraining future government spending and debt that are hurting job growth.”

Boehner called on President Obama to abandon his veto threat, and urged Senate Democrats to reconsider their opposition and pass the Cut, Cap, and Balance plan.

Democrats were nearly unanimous in their opposition to the bill, although Reps. Dan Boren (Okla.), Jim Cooper (Tenn.), Jim Matheson (Utah) , Mike McIntyre (N.C.) and Heath Shuler (N.C.) all joined the Republicans in supporting the measure.

Nine Republicans, including presidential hopefuls Reps. Michele Bachmann (Minn.), and Ron Paul (Texas), voted against the measure.

Bachmann explained her opposition to the bill during a floor speech leading into the vote: “While I embrace the principles of Cut, Cap and Balance, the motion does not go far enough in fundamentally restructuring the way Washington spends taxpayer dollars. The principles found in this bill are a step in the right direction toward the fundamental restructuring we need in the way Washington spends taxpayer dollars,” Bachmann said. “We can meet our obligations, keep our bond rating and keep our promises, but we have to make the tough choices now to turn our economy around and put Americans back to work.”

The other Republicans joining Bachmann and Paul in voting against the legislation were Reps. Paul Broun (Ga.), Francisco Canseco (Texas), Scott DesJarlais (Tenn.), Morgan Griffith (Va.), Walter Jones (Va.), Connie Mack (Fla.) and Dana Rohrabacher (California).

The bill now heads to the Senate, where it is faces still opposition from Democrats.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

Monday
Jul182011

White House Compares 'Cut, Cap and Balance Act' to 'Ryan Plan on Steroids'

Medioimages/Photodisc(WASHINGTON) -- Following the president’s veto threat Monday morning, senior White House officials launched a full-on assault against the Republican “Cut, Cap and Balance Act” Monday afternoon, describing it as “extreme, radical, and unprecedented.”

On a conference call with reporters Monday, White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer said the legislation “essentially enshrines into the constitution the Ryan plan on steroids.”

“Unless House Republicans are willing to raise revenues, significant revenues, something they have refused to do, it would require much deeper spending cuts than in the Ryan plan. This would result in even more devastating cuts to clean energy, education and health care for children and people with disabilities,” Pfeiffer said.

In addition to cutting spending in fiscal 2012 by $111 billion and capping future spending at 19.9 percent of GDP, the bill would require that a Balanced Budget Amendment be approved by Congress and sent to the states in order for the debt ceiling to be increased.

“This is equivalent to holding the debt limit hostage,” Deputy Director of the National Economic Council Jason Furman said on the call.

Pfeiffer reiterated that the president believes compromise, not a constitutional amendment, is needed to get the nation’s fiscal house in order.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio







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