February 17th, 2010
05:14 PM ET
5 years ago

House GOP pushes for televised jobs summit with Pelosi, Democrats

Rep. John Boehner and other GOP leaders sent a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi asking for a televised meeting.
Rep. John Boehner and other GOP leaders sent a letter to Speaker Nancy Pelosi asking for a televised meeting.

Washington (CNN) – Top congressional Republicans called on House Speaker Nancy Pelosi Wednesday to hold a televised meeting with members of both parties aimed at crafting a bipartisan job growth bill.

House Minority Leader John Boehner, R-Ohio, and House Minority Whip Eric Cantor, R-Virginia, sent a letter to Pelosi and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Maryland, arguing that current efforts to stimulate the economy haven't worked.

Mounting job losses demand that both sides work together on new approaches, they said.

The two leaders have complained that the $154 billion jobs bill passed by the House at the end of last year was drafted without GOP input.

It is "widely believed to be dead-on-arrival in the Senate," they wrote.

"Though we had different philosophical approaches, it is unfortunate that there was neither a public discussion nor an opportunity for the American people - especially small business owners - to become more engaged in the discussion. Had there been such a discussion perhaps Congress would have produced a bill that more directly addressed our nation's economic problems," the letter states.

CNN sought reaction to the GOP proposal from Pelosi and Hoyer, but did not receive any response.

President Barack Obama appeared last month in a rare televised forum at the House Republican retreat. The meeting, which was carried live on cable networks, showed the president and Republicans engaged in a sometimes heated, but substantive discussion on a range of issues including health care, the deficit, and jobs.

Obama has since invited a group of bipartisan leaders from the House and Senate to participate in a similar open meeting later this month on health care reform.

Boehner and Cantor noted that Senate Democrats also held an open meeting with Obama and let television cameras in. Tweaking Pelosi and other Democratic leaders for not showing the same transparency and having a similar forum, they asked her to "follow this precedent and agree to participate in an open meeting focused on job creation and economic growth between leaders of both parties in the House."

House GOP aides point to a series of recent public opinion polls showing the public most concerned about the economy. They believe that while congressional Democrats continue to wrangle over health care legislation, there's an opening for Republicans to gain an advantage on the issue of job creation.

"We don't feel that Democrats have a good message when it comes to creating a new environment for economic growth and job creation, and we are confident that Republicans do," Cantor spokesman Brad Dayspring told CNN.

Obama and top congressional Democrats spent much of the day Wednesday marking the one-year anniversary of administration's $826 billion economic stimulus bill. Democrats claim the unemployment rate and overall economy would be significantly worse without the influx of federal funds.


Filed under: Congress • Jobs
soundoff (106 Responses)
  1. Elle in WA

    Wow, again with the finger-pointing. How about writing a letter that says you want a televised meeting and leaving out all the accusations and complaints? This is why nothing gets done – you guys are so focused on throwing the next punch and pushing your own party praise that you piss off the other side when it's not necessary.

    My 2- and 4-year old kids fight less than the house and senate. Get a life.

    February 17, 2010 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  2. Katie

    Just wait till November and the Republicans will have the majority and be able to get something done without the Dems in the way.The Dems want everything their way look at Peloski and Reid.Peloski has caused most of the problem.

    February 17, 2010 05:51 pm at 5:51 pm |
  3. LacrosseMom(the real one)

    In a recent poll, 62% of Americans BELIEVE that President Obama is trying to work with the GOP, compared to 21% who believe the GOP is trying to work with President Obama.

    Put everything on TV, so we can see the Grand Obstructionist Party doing their best to ....... obstruct!

    February 17, 2010 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  4. Sniffit

    ""We don't feel that Democrats have a good message when it comes to creating a new environment for economic growth and job creation, and we are confident that Republicans do," Cantor spokesman Brad Dayspring told CNN. "

    Translation: It is bad when you tell the business sector, especially corporate giants that basically control everything (and buy me my campaigns, commercials and elections), that they need to start behaving in a responsible manner, pay their middle-class workers better, not engage in financial chicanery and that the government is going to do everything it can to make sure that everyone's rights are protected from their abuses. Our message, which is "continue doing business as usual" will be met with much applause from Wall Street and the corporate giants and they will then stop firing people and start hiring again as a means of manipulating public opinion through unemployment.

    February 17, 2010 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  5. Mike in MN

    If the health care summit is going to be on TV, then Pelosi has no excuse not to do the same on a jobs bill. I'm sure she will refuse.
    Now if we could just get the current Democrats behind closed door meetings on how to move the current House and Senate versions of the health care bills on TV. So far all the Democrats want to put on TV is the bipartisan summit, which they are making no secret is not about bipartisanship, but about trashing the Republican ideas. Which I guess they think will then make voters like the Democrat bills that voters have rejected.
    Obama is all about theater designed to manipulate voters. Has been from the start of his campaign for President to now. It's time he tries the approach of actually getting Congress to write some bills voters actaully like instead of writing bills they don't like. Followed by writing a daily script to spin that voters really do like the bills, Republicans are evil and it is all their fault, and that all this massive load of spending and debt will lead to an enormously prosperous America even though the deficits projected for the next decade will average a tillion dollars a year.

    February 17, 2010 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  6. Aviate

    And if the Democrats agree, will the Republicans then whine about it being a "trap" and threaten not to come, like they did on Health Care Reform.

    Posturing is easy, governing is hard work. No wonder Republicans are better at the former.

    February 17, 2010 05:56 pm at 5:56 pm |
  7. Louise in NC

    The Republicans are getting antsy because they have nothing to tell about how they helped the economy by voting for legislation--except their NO vote. This can get very interesting as November comes around!!

    February 17, 2010 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  8. Sniffit

    "How about writing a letter that says you want a televised meeting and leaving out all the accusations and complaints?"

    Because then it wouldn't get on the "news" as free advertising for the GOP's positions (and those accusations).

    February 17, 2010 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  9. michael armstrong sr. TX.

    Nasty Palosi is out of there come election time none to soon by by you idiot .

    February 17, 2010 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  10. Tom L.

    The fact is that with Pelosi, Reid and Obama there is less trust in the government and their ability to fix problems than ever before.

    Maybe it's because of all the ridiculous and impossible promises that Obama made...

    February 17, 2010 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  11. Candi

    Bush's "No Child Left Behind "Was Because of the Democrats,they are the chidren left behind.Enough knowledge to barely read;but,not enough to make sound judgements.

    February 17, 2010 05:57 pm at 5:57 pm |
  12. Drew

    Please give the cry and whine dems a good job.They have so so much trouble with success.Maybe if they worked hard and went to school instead of expecting the government to take care of them,they too could be like the Republicans.

    February 17, 2010 06:00 pm at 6:00 pm |
  13. single mom

    Wow, how things change in a year!
    Last year – you lost, get over it, we don't need you to run things.
    This year – come around the fire, we'll roast marshmallows and sing Kumbayah. With cameras so everyone can see what a farce this is.

    Obama promised televised CSPAN debates on health care. Um, I don't remember that happening. So now we're supposed to believe this? Whatever.

    February 17, 2010 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  14. MsDp

    When does his term ends? This guy is not only a racist but he hates women, especially Nancy P. Not sure how he ever got to be in the senate. Even his body language expresses racism and arrogance. He never has any good ideas to debate only non constructive complaints. How and when do the republicans replace this idiot?

    February 17, 2010 06:01 pm at 6:01 pm |
  15. Tom L.

    What obstructionism????

    You had a FILIBUSTER-PROOF majority. Republicans could not stop anything.

    I guess it's the liberal way, though. Blame everyone else and take no responsibility for your own problems.

    The fact that Obama continues to say that it was far worse than he and his "experts" ever predicted just proves how unqualified these people are for the job. They admitted that they didn't know how to do their job and properly assess situations.

    February 17, 2010 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  16. Former Republican

    Republicans have no ideas, they just want something televised because President Obama and the American people are calling them out on their No to everything that will help Americans. They are running scared because they know they can not win with the tea baggers and racists. We have millions of people that are intelligent and don't fall for their lies.

    February 17, 2010 06:02 pm at 6:02 pm |
  17. Aviate

    Just wait till November and the Republicans will have the majority and be able to get something done without the Dems in the way.The Dems want everything their way look at Peloski and Reid.Peloski has caused most of the problem.
    --

    The next time the Republicans get something done, it will be the first. Unless you count cutting taxes for the wealthy and trashing the budget and the economy, of course.

    Now, since you're so eager to have the Republicans in charge so they can "get things done" (never mind the filibuster and the veto), perhaps you and the rest of the GOP can enlighten us as to what, exactly, it is the Republicans propose to do? What are their plans? Whether it's health care, the budget, or job creation, the GOP's plans to "get things done" have been the best guarded secret since the recipie for Coca Cola.

    And no, saying "NO" all the time and cutting taxes some more for the rich are not a plan.

    February 17, 2010 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  18. Mike Syracuse, NY

    Party of NO? You bet:
    No to deficits 3X those of Bush
    No to raising taxes so even more no-loads can sit back and take without paying any tax (like 47% now do)
    No to the government taking over one sixth of the economy. If they can't even manage Cash for Clunkers how will they ever run health care
    No to amnesty for illegals, who hold millions of US jobs.
    No to more bills like the stimulus which has been an $800 billion failure
    No to providing lawyers to terrorists with tax dollars that should go for weapons to kill them
    No to the liberal agenda that is reducing us to third world status!

    February 17, 2010 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  19. Vote for GOP based on their ideas, which are.......?????

    I wonder, I wonder what would happen if I did a search on GOP comments in regards to televised job summits?

    I wonder if they claimed that it was a waste?

    Oh wait, I don't have to wonder, I have the internet and the capability to research.

    February 17, 2010 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  20. Janet

    Hurry up and meet,the dems are jumping ship,SS Obamie,quicker than can be replaced.Obamie's poll of trying to work with the repubs is46% and the American people have the dems dropping like a rock and the repubs soaring like an eagle.

    February 17, 2010 06:08 pm at 6:08 pm |
  21. Felonious Monk

    GOP input? GOP input?

    Did they not have the chance to say NO?

    How completely ridiculous. Republicans have filibuster 127 times since Obama took office. The average for a full term is somewhere in the 50's. You can't tell me that all 127 filibusters were with merit.

    How is this helping America? When has any republican offered anything "for" the American "people?" They never have and never will.

    Absolutely ridiculous.

    February 17, 2010 06:09 pm at 6:09 pm |
  22. Sniffit

    "The fact is that with Pelosi, Reid and Obama there is less trust in the government and their ability to fix problems than ever before. "

    Hey genius, polls have consistently shown that the majority of people still trust the Democrats to do a better job getting us out of these messes than they do the Republicans. They have also been showing a steady belief that the GOP is more responsible for nothing currently getting done and the partisan rancor that currently exists. The GOP's babble about it all being the Dems' faults is jus smoke and mirrors.

    February 17, 2010 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  23. Sara

    Need to 1st give the dems a course in basic economics and government,they are just stupid on these subjects.They run their mouth ;but,the more they say the dumber they sound.

    February 17, 2010 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  24. Felonious Monk

    If you are not from Texas you cannot fully realize the complete corruption of the Bush. Only a Texan, who witnessed the destruction would know what the Bush was really like.

    The governor of Texas has virtually no power and idiots from other states voted this guy into office. Obama is clearly more productive than the Bush.

    What a good first year, if you don't think so you are either a racist, which most of you are, a person who believes more in ideas than people, or corrupt.

    Now which is it?

    February 17, 2010 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  25. johnrj08

    And exactly who thinks anybody should trust that Mr. Boehner and his colleagues have any intentions of negotiating in good faith on this issue after they've voted against every single other measure that has been supported by the President.

    I hope the electorate isn't as stupid as Boehner thinks it is....

    February 17, 2010 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
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