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. Truth-Bomb Thrower

    Jobs summit. HA! What a joke. Why don't they just call it what it is: A video/photo op for politicians who want to get re-elected.

    Both republicans and democrats are responsible for the economic mess we are currently in, and now both parties are trying to package itself as the solution. As long as republicans act and govern like democrats, they are no more deserving of power than the democrats.

    February 17, 2010 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  2. m smith

    Haven't the dem's already done this. Why are the repos trying to cash in now. They shot it down last time. ?

    February 17, 2010 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  3. Sharon

    Repulicans are going to over play thier hand before Nov.It's already starting to turn around.Just keep saying no,the dumbest people will figure it out after a while.

    February 17, 2010 07:26 pm at 7:26 pm |
  4. DA

    Bone Head Boehner and the GOP are finally trying to get their acts together because the President is starting to pull those little cards of theirs. LOL

    February 17, 2010 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  5. harold

    Why are Republicans in Congress so cranky?.. We should strip them of their Health Insurance untill they find a way and means to get Health Insurance for all people in the USA citizens...Now Tea Bags there is a great proposal do you all think... so?

    February 17, 2010 07:34 pm at 7:34 pm |
  6. harold

    Just a side comment about Boenher... the House Republican leader.. He always has the same look on his face...like he sees something out there in the distance someplace that the rest of us cannot see... What gives John?..Now get your mind on getting something done for the people of the USA... rather than just doing in the Democrats with .....your everlasting LUST to be Speaker..

    February 17, 2010 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  7. C. Farrell, Houston, Tx

    They are only complaining because they want to take credit. Poor Gopers, Rush, Palin, Hannity and Newt must have lead them down the wrong path and now they want to play nice. I don't think so and I pray the Democrats will continue on without them because their NO to everything is for Obama and the American people to fail. They got themselves in this pickle now they need to C their own way out. LOL

    February 17, 2010 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  8. Bear

    The jobs bill is a SHAM!!! It is Economic Stimulus Part Deux. They need to fund every dime of this bill from the unspent Economic Stimulus they passed last year. Otherwise, it is just another opportunity to pork us (in many ways).

    The very idea they are discussing this is PROOF the original stimulus did not work. Otherwise, there would be no need for this bill. If you keep throwing money at the problem you can't help but create a job eventually. There needs to be a stop to the spending that is completely out of control in Washington, DC. Another broken promise from the big O.

    And the TARP money needs to go back into the FED and NOT spent on this crap!!! Our congress needs to be legally accountable to the spending and we need to see perp walks, not spending cap hikes.

    February 17, 2010 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  9. JR

    ""widely believed to be dead-on-arrival', isn't that just the same old NO from the party of NO?

    February 17, 2010 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  10. The Lady

    can the GOP think of anything on their own. I am so sick and tired of you all wasting my tax dollars on this crap, Get to dam work and earn your money, there are people out here who wish they had your jobs and you all act like you are playing chess.

    February 17, 2010 07:47 pm at 7:47 pm |
  11. They call me "tater salad"

    Since President Obama "smoked" them on National TV, to the point of Fox Noise having to bail out early due to the fact there was no way they could spin things around to make the Republicans look good!The Republicans must be thinking they'll stand a better chance against Madam Speaker Pelosi........Good luck with that you petty, insignificant little clowns! Is Fox gonna bail early again if Pelosi starts laying the smackdown on you guy's????

    February 17, 2010 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  12. leon pa

    they do not have nothing to offer

    February 17, 2010 07:50 pm at 7:50 pm |
  13. Annie, Atlanta

    Why is the GOP pushing for this to be televised? So they can rail against it being televised, if it's agreed upon? We're on to their games.

    And speaking of games, guess what Governor Bob McDonnell (R) of VA did? He removed existing non-discrimination statutes against LGBT workers in his state. Wonder what he'll do next? Remove non-discrimination statutes against women? Good luck to y'all in VA.

    February 17, 2010 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  14. DB TX

    Why we need Job creation bill since stimulus has created/saved 2 million jobs and will create more this year?

    February 17, 2010 07:54 pm at 7:54 pm |
  15. America First

    Why doesn't he attend the televised healthcare summit first? Oh, that's right Boehner is too scared because the GOP "healthcare plan" is nothing and he doesn't want the American people to find out. At least at a jobs summit Boehner can continue to criticize the stimulus even though it is working slowly but surely (only one year to clean up a mess decades in the making is a little unrealistic), but at a healthcare summit he would have nothing. Although how Boehner can argue against some of President Obama's policies that are clearly bi-partisian (like the tax cuts) with a straight face should be interesting to see. GOPers have no problem with hypocrisy though.

    February 17, 2010 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  16. IndyVoter

    Oh...poor Boehner can't come up with his own ideas. He has to borrow them from the President! You thought you were going to bury the Prez with "gotcha" questions at your Republican caucus. But he thumped you, mopped the floor with you and got credit for having it be televised....Now Republicant's are scrambling. LOL! HILARIOUS!

    February 17, 2010 07:58 pm at 7:58 pm |
  17. jc

    The best way that John Boner can help in Congress is to get out of the way and stop saying NO to everything. The GOP won't come up with any ideas that aren't from lobbyist, so why listen to them. They have nothing to offer.

    Time for the Dems to just bowl over the GOP and push through legislation that they were elected to pass when voted in in 08.

    The GOP stands for "Grand Obstructionist Party." Or in short the party of NO!

    February 17, 2010 07:59 pm at 7:59 pm |
  18. Nevada dude

    all Republcans have to do to have some progress is come in with good ideas, not those tired old talking points that everyone knows wont work. Didint work for the 8 yrs under W, didnt work under Reagan, didnt work undr Hoover, wont work now

    The GOP strategy isnt so much one of saying NO to everything as knowing that Democratic leaders are so spineless that the CAN say no to everything and get away with it. It is not so much one of political obstructionism from the minority party as a lack of courage and moral strength from the majority party.

    February 17, 2010 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  19. Bill from CA

    Wait a second...Boehner wants a televised meeting between the GOP and Dems. About the jobs bill. On TV. Isn't that what the house does every day on CSPAN? Just saying...way to go, Boner.

    February 17, 2010 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  20. PUT the Republicanische Bund obstructionists on TV

    Let the WORLD see what selfish, unprincipled fascist oligarchs they are.

    February 17, 2010 08:08 pm at 8:08 pm |
  21. Marie Laveaux

    Just more politcal posturing by the Republicans. The situation appears to be getting more hopeless daily. I cannot stomach what the Republicans are doing to the people of America. Shame on them!

    February 17, 2010 08:09 pm at 8:09 pm |
  22. BB

    The circus elephants just don't get it......they are in the minority,
    they should not be allowed to call the shots, if they don't like the jobs bill...too bad!!! All we need is 51, we don't need the circus elephants!!!
    No one said anything about Jobs! Jobs! Jobs! while Bush was in, he lost over 5 million in 07 and 08 alone, the last few months he was in, we were losing 550,000 to 750,000 every single month. No one was pointing it out then. Back then it was all hush..hush.., not even the media reported on it, not even CNN. How sad is that???
    So Boehner, go tanning and drink some gin and then go cry into your glass.

    February 17, 2010 08:19 pm at 8:19 pm |
  23. BB

    R E C O N S I L I A T I O N!!!!!!!!
    50 and Biden is all we need!!!
    We could get EVERYTHING we want done by August!!!
    Plow over every single one of them.
    These tools are never ever going to vote for anything Obama wants
    to get done anyhow, so leave 'em behind. I could care less about Bipartisanship at this point. Get done what we came to do!!!
    Oh...YES WE CAN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    February 17, 2010 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  24. Stallion

    These lawmakers really need to get going on the high unemployment. If it remains as it is the democrats will be voted out in droves.

    February 17, 2010 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  25. catmomtx

    I have always wondered why Nancy Pelosi is hated so by Republicans? Is it because she is a strong female? Is it because she is doing her job as Speaker of the House? Is it because like many of the white males in Congress that she is wealthy? I mean she is doing her job just as other Speakers before her but she has been vilified ever since she was elected Speaker of the House. Just like with Hillary Clinton, Republicans seem to be threatened by strong assertive women. That's the reason they like Palin so much. She makes Republican males look like geniuses and they know they can manipulate her. Not so true for Nancy Pelosi and Hillary Clinton.

    February 17, 2010 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
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