Boehner says the debt limit is Obama’s problem
Negotiations between Republicans and the White House appeared to have stalled as partisan bickering continued. On Tuesday, Republican House Leader John Boehner attempted to deflect blame on the debt limit stalemate and claimed the responsibility to increase the debt ceiling lies with Obama.
“This debt limit increase is his problem,” Boehner said. “I think it’s time for him to lead by putting his plan on the table. Something that the Congress can pass.”
Boehner’s comment is clearly intended as a political jab at Obama, but the fact remains that raising the debt ceiling is necessary to pay for what Congress has already authorized the federal government to spend.
“The amount of debt that the government must issue to meet its existing legal obligations is determined based on previous spending and revenue decisions made over many years by Congresses and presidents of both parties,” according to the U.S. Treasury Department. “Raising the debt limit simply allows the government to meet those existing legal commitments to investors, seniors, soldiers, and millions of other Americans. Refusing to raise the debt limit does nothing to reduce those existing obligations or cut the deficit.”
Transcript of House Speaker John Boehner’s (R-Ohio) statement on the continuing debt limit negotiations (7/12/11):
“You know my message to the White House over the last several months has been real simple: spending caps have to be larger than the increase in debt ceiling. Secondly, there are no tax increases on the table. Thirdly, we have to have real controls in place to make sure that this never happens again. Real controls like a balanced budget amendment.
“The fact is House Republicans do have a plan. We passed our budget back in the spring, outlined our priorities. Where’s the President’s plan? When is he going to lay his cards on the table? This debt limit increase is his problem, and I think it’s time for him to lead by putting his plan on the table. Something that the Congress can pass.”
- CSPAN.org: Debt reduction negotiators meet again today, Republicans “pessimistic” of a deal
- WhatTheFolly.com: Reid scolds Republicans for walking out on debt limit talks & refusing to address taxes
- WhatTheFolly.com: Sen. Mitch McConnell proposes a “last choice option” to raise the debt limit
- Treasury.gov: Facts about the debt limit