Skip Navigation

Close and don't show again.

Your browser is out of date.

You may not get the full experience here on National Journal.

Please upgrade your browser to any of the following supported browsers:

Republicans Reject White House Funding Deal Republicans Reject White House Funding Deal

This ad will end in seconds
 
Close X

Not a member? Learn More »

Forget Your Password?

Don't have an account? Register »

Reveal Navigation
 

 

Congress / APPROPRIATIONS

Republicans Reject White House Funding Deal

GOP leaders are dismissing the Obama administration's proposed $6.5 billion in cuts as "status quo" and insufficient.

Republican leaders call the White House's offer to cut $6.5 billion in discretionary spending "unacceptable" and "indefensible.”(Jonathan Ernst/Getty Images)

March 4, 2011

House and Senate Republican leaders this morning assertively dismissed the White House’s offer to cut another $6.5 billion in discretionary spending for the remaining seven months of this fiscal year, saying that level of spending reduction is not enough to meet budget-cutting goals.

“Unfortunately, it is little more than the status quo, and the status quo is indefensible and unacceptable,” said House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, regarding the proposal from the White House a day after the start of bipartisan, closed-door negotiations over the federal budget and efforts to avert a government shutdown.

Earlier today, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., offered a similar position on the Senate floor, expressing skepticism that the White House offer was even serious, saying it “is unacceptable and it’s indefensible.”

 

The fight over spending in the current fiscal year, which ends September 30, is the result of Congress's inability to enact a budget last year. A series of short-term stopgap measures has been passed to pay for government operations so far this year. Last month, House Republicans passed a continuing resolution for the remaining seven months of the fiscal year that would cut $61 billion from current discretionary spending levels; Democrats have balked at the level of those cuts.

Earlier this week, Obama signed a shorter-term CR that will keep government operations running through March 18, giving lawmakers two weeks to decide what to do next. That legislation cuts spending this year by $4 billion.

And at the urging of President Obama -- who has called for a spending freeze in his 2012 budget plan -- congressional leaders from both chambers and parties met with vice president Joe Biden on Thursday to begin talks aimed at reaching a compromise for the remainder of fiscal 2011. After the session, Biden said that the meetings will continue.

However, Republicans indicated today that they see Obama’s opening offer of $6.5 billion in cuts as a nonstarter.

“The American people spoke loudly and clearly last November," Boehner said. "They want to cut spending to help create a better environment for job creation.  Americans have a right to know: When will Democrats get serious about cutting spending?”

McConnell, meanwhile, accused Democrats of playing politics. “Democrats' whole approach is to see what they can get away with, rather than to actually do something about the debt and jobs crisis Americans want us to address,” he said.

The rancor will continue next week when Senate Democrats call up two bills to show what CR proposal will actually pass the chamber. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., said he will hold a vote on the House-passed continuing resolution, which includes cut of about $61 billion below current spending; that will demonstrate, he says, that it cannot pass the Senate. Reid will also offer a Democratic alternative, which is expected to fail as well. The point would be to underscore the need for compromise.

The Democratic plan would cut spending about $6.5 billion from current levels.

Durbin said the votes would show that the House-passed CR “goes too far and can’t pass the Senate.” He said Democrats “hope to show we have Democratic support and maybe some Republican support” for an alternative proposal.

Job Board
Search Jobs
Digital and Content Manager, E4C
American Society of Civil Engineers | New York, NY
PRODUCT REVIEW ENGINEER
American Society of Civil Engineers | CA
Neighborhood Traffic Safety Services Intern
American Society of Civil Engineers | Bellevue, WA
United Technologies Research Fellow
American Society of Civil Engineers | New York, NY
Process Engineering Co-op
American Society of Civil Engineers | Conshohocken, PA
Electrical Engineer Co-op
American Society of Civil Engineers | Findlay, OH
Application Engineer/Developer INTERN - Complex Fluids
American Society of Civil Engineers | Brisbane, CA
Application Engineer - Internships CAE/CFD Metro Detroit
American Society of Civil Engineers | Livonia, MI
Chief Geoscientist
American Society of Civil Engineers
Application Engineer - Internships CAE/CFD Metro Boston
American Society of Civil Engineers | Burlington, MA
Professional Development Program Engineer
American Society of Civil Engineers | Farmington Hills, MI
Civil Enginering Intern - Water/Wastewater/Site-Development
American Society of Civil Engineers | Sacramento, CA
Staff Accountant
American Society of Civil Engineers | Englewood, CO
Biomedical Service Internship Position
American Society of Civil Engineers | Flint, MI
 
Comments
comments powered by Disqus