“The president hasn’t been able to get there,” Boehner said in the statement. “He talked about a ‘balanced’ approach on the campaign trail. What the White House offered yesterday — $1.3 trillion in revenue for only $850 billion in spending cuts — cannot be considered balanced. We’re going to keep the door open in hopes the president can find a way to support a balanced approach.”
Rep. Charlie Dent of Pennsylvania, chairman of a moderate faction, The Tuesday Group, said he was hopeful the talks would yield a final agreement in coming days.
“Things are moving, hopefully towards a resolution. I’m going to look at it and analyze it,” Dent said.
Other GOP lawmakers such as Adam Kinzinger of Illinois and Brian P. Billbray of California said they were encouraged by reports of progress in the talks between Boehner and Obama, and said they were open to a deal.
“There are no tax increases being considered, it’s about how many tax cuts will be included,” Billbray said. “The biggest issue about the tax increases, is if you do it, it will prove that it’s not an issue. The issue is spending. If the president wins on this, it will prove he was wrong about this. You have to focus on spending.”
“We ought to do it the way the Constitution anticipated. We ought to have regular order on the floor of the House and have an open amendment process,” said Rep. Louie Gohmert of Texas, a staunch critic of the closed-door negotiations between Obama and Boehner.
A number of key leaders such as Energy and Commerce Chairman Fred Upton of Michigan declined comment on the negotiations.
Rep. Elijah Cummings, D-Md., right, hugs Harold Schaitberger, General President of the International Association of Fire Fighters, after the Congressman spoke at the IAFF's Legislative Conference General Session at the Hyatt Regency on Capitol Hill, March 9, 2015. The day featured addresses by members of Congress and Vice President Joe Biden.