Entries in Debt Negotiations (3)


White House Downplays Leadership ‘Gaps’ in Debt Negotiations

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza(WASHINGTON) -- The White House is seeking to downplay a report that “gaps” in President Obama’s leadership contributed to the failure of a “grand bargain” in the debt crisis negotiations of last year.

In his latest book, The Price of Politics, and in an interview with ABC News’ Diane Sawyer which aired Monday evening, journalist Bob Woodward says the president lacked the “stamina” to cultivate personal relationships within Congress that would have helped break the ice during the tense discussions. The fallout eventually resulted in the short-term solution Capitol Hill is left to deal with as it returns Monday from five weeks out of session.

White House press secretary Jay Carney Monday doubled down on the administration’s official stance that hardliner members within the GOP stonewalled compromise during those furious months. Obama remained “absolutely committed” to avoiding a default of the federal government, Carney said, a notion “Republicans, notably in the House of Representatives, seem to relish the prospect of coming about.”

“There is no question that the president during those negotiations had to be the responsible party and ensure that however they ended, they prevented default,” he said.

The spokesman was dismissive when asked whether the president regretted developing deeper personal relationships with the top Democrats and Republicans involved.

“It’s a funny conclusion to reach,” Carney shot back, highlighting hours Obama spent with congressional leaders over golf and other leisure activities. But the secretary maintained that regardless of the weakness or strength of the president’s bonds with politicians, it mattered little.

“I’m not sure what magical past people are invoking where they imagine that in any recent time, serious accomplishments were achieved in policy matters at a dinner in Georgetown,” he told reporters.  "It doesn’t happen.  And what has to happen is that leaders have to be willing on behalf of all of the American people to compromise and take risk, and not to worry about whether they’re going to get a challenge from the Tea Party in their next congressional primary.”

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Nancy Pelosi Statement on Debt Deal

JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty ImagesWASHINGTON -- Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi released the following statement after the President's speech Sunday on the ongoing talks to avert a default crisis:

"We all agree that our nation cannot default on our obligations and that we must honor our nation's commitments to our seniors, and our men and women in the military.

"I look forward to reviewing the legislation with my Caucus to see what level of support we can provide."

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Boehner: Debt Limit Plan Will Likely Take Bipartisan Support to Pass

SAUL LOEB/AFP/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) -- Coming out of a closed-door meeting with rank and file Republicans on Tuesday, House Speaker John Boehner said he believes his bill has bipartisan support to pass the House of Representatives and the Senate, and he said that he believed his plan, which would cut $1.2 trillion upfront through discretionary spending caps, “is enough” to quell the markets.

Facing a backlash from some of the more conservative wing in the Republican Party, Boehner admitted that his measure will likely take bipartisan support to send it to the Senate, but he was still confident it would pass.

“I do think that we’re going to have some work to do to get it passed, but I think we can do it,” Boehner said.

Boehner called on members of both parties to review the plan and consider supporting it when it comes to the floor for a vote Wednesday.

The speaker said that the plan’s package of discretionary cuts is “real” and said “next year’s spending on the discretionary side will be lower than this year’s spending.”

“That is a big step in the right direction. We put real caps in place. I don’t have the numbers at my fingertips,” Boehner said. “All I know is that it’s going to be less than it was last year.”

Rep. Jeb Hensarling, the House Republican Conference chairman, said he thought “the president’s speech last night I believe was historic,” as President Obama expressed his opposition to a two-step process to increase the debt limit.

“I do not recall the last time a president of the United States used a nationally televised address not to tell the American people what he was for, but to tell the American people what he was against. Seven days out from his August 2 deadline there is still no plan to deal with the debt crisis from the president,” Hensarling, R-Texas, said. “It’s not about the next election. It’s about the next generation.”

House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy pointed out that although President Obama said he opposes the Boehner plan, the president has not issued a veto threat.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

ABC News Radio