Only hours after being rebuffed by Democrats in the House, the White House said that it received no promise of Republican votes in return for President Obama’s support of a tax deal giving the GOP an extension of the upper-income tax cuts.
“No, we haven’t gotten specific numbers” from the Republicans, said White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer when asked if Republican leaders had promised to provide needed votes in the House and Senate. “But we are confident and they are confident that we will get significant support from their caucus. And we suspect that we will get, when all is said and done, a good amount of support from Democrats as well.”
Pfeiffer’s comments came on a conference call set up with reporters to make the case that the deal will benefit middle-class families.
Pressed to outline how the White House will respond to the rejection of the deal by the House Democratic caucus, Pfeiffer said the administration will “keep making the case to the House” and the Senate.
“And,” he added, “we think that while there are things in this package that we don’t like and the president doesn’t like and other members of our party don’t like... that people, if they look at the details of this, will become much more comfortable with the compromise.”
Pfeiffer stressed what he called “the consequences of... having a very large tax increase hit a whole bunch of people who can’t afford it at a time of fragile recovery.”
Jason Furman, deputy assistant to the president for economic policy, also used the call to downplay the chances of major changes being made to the deal announced by the president.
“All of the major issues were addressed in the context of that framework,” he said. “There are a number of other details and significantly smaller items, and we’ve been working hard with Democrats and Republicans in both the House and the Senate over the last few days in nailing down the details.”