Boehner is sticking to his 2011 rule that every dollar in debt ceiling increase be matched by a dollar of “spending cuts and reforms.”
“He doesn’t have a choice — he can declare whatever he wants to declare, but he needs to pass one,” one top Senate Republican aide said of a debt ceiling bill. “If [the White House] had shown any interest in dealing with spending and debt, we would not have to use the debt ceiling or anything else as leverage.”
Rank-and-file members are largely on board with where leadership is taking them, even if they were less than pleased with the tax deal that helped avert, at least partially, the fiscal cliff Congress created. Though many voted for the Jan. 1 deal, their “yes” votes will come much less easily on the debt limit, which many of them do not feel obligated to extend.
“[Obama] says he won’t negotiate to raise the so-called debt ceiling ... I have a message for him: That’s not going to happen,” Sen. Orrin G. Hatch, R-Utah, wrote in an op-ed Monday. “If he thinks I’m going to agree to more revenue so he doesn’t have to cut spending, he’s got another thing coming.”
Lois Lerner, director of exempt organizations for the IRS, arrives for a House Oversight and Government Reform Committee hearing on the investigation of the IRS' targeting of political groups. Lerner invoked her Fifth Amendment right to not testify and caused a protest from some committee members when she offered an opening statement and engaged in dialogue with members before invoking the right.
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