White House hits back at outspoken Dem
December 15th, 2010
09:23 PM ET
3 years ago

White House hits back at outspoken Dem

(CNN) - Rep. Peter DeFazio, D-Oregon, on Wednesday claimed President Obama put pressure on Democrats to vote for a controversial extension of Bush-era tax cuts, saying it would be "the end of his presidency," but the White House says it's not true.

In an interview with CNN's Eliot Spitzer on "Parker Spitzer," DeFazio said "The White House is putting on tremendous pressure, making phone calls; the president's making phone calls saying that's the end of his presidency if he doesn't get this bad deal."


Asked by CNN's Kathleen Parker if he had personally received such a phone call, DeFazio said he had not, adding, "I won't name the members cause they said this to me, you know, not for public disclosure, I talked to one member who had that call."

DeFazio argued the plan would harm the administration, and called the deal with Republicans a "trap."

"I think this is potentially the end of his possibility of getting reelected if he gets this deal and it's a trap," DeFazio said. "It's a trap on social security and on progressivity in our tax system, and a tax on huge cuts to programs we care about because this adds half a trillion bucks to the deficit next year."

White House spokesman Amy Brundage countered DeFazio's comments.

"He [President Obama] hasn’t said anything remotely close to that and he’s never talked with DeFazio about the issue," Brundage said.

On Wednesday, the Senate passed the $858 billion tax cut package, which includes a two-year extension of the Bush-era tax cuts set to expire December 31. The measure would also extend unemployment benefits for 13 months, cut the payroll tax by 2 percentage points for a year, restore the estate tax at a lower level and continue a series of other tax breaks. The measure, which passed the Senate with a vote tally of 81-19, now advances to the House of Representatives. The House will take up the bill Thursday, according to Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Maryland.

Rep. DeFazio will appear on CNN's "Parker Spitzer" Thursday at 8 p.m. ET.

Watch Parker Spitzer weeknights 8pm ET. For the latest from Parker Spitzer click here.


Filed under: Peter DeFazio • Taxes • TV-Parker Spitzer
soundoff (21 Responses)
  1. Matt

    His presidency wouldn't be in jeopardy, if he only showed some spine.

    December 15, 2010 09:37 pm at 9:37 pm |
  2. GOP = Greed Over People

    Here is a thought, it may be the end of his Presidency among the base if it does pass.

    While it is true I will never again vote for a republiKKKan under any any circumstances, a third party candidate while a waste of my vote, would get the wasted vote for the first time in my voting life.

    Or, in the interest of the party, President Obama could step aside in 2012 and let someone else in the party give it a go.

    While, I would not like to see him challenged in the primary for 2012, that may also be an option.

    December 15, 2010 09:54 pm at 9:54 pm |
  3. Rick McDaniel

    That wouldn't be a bad thing.

    December 15, 2010 10:10 pm at 10:10 pm |
  4. PDub

    ½ feel that if he DOES makes the deal – he won't get reelected.
    ½ feel that if he DOES NOT make the deal – he won't get reelected …(a sigh of comfort).

    So either way, he's gone!!! Not many win-win situations in our government, but I like this one.

    December 15, 2010 10:26 pm at 10:26 pm |
  5. argo

    While thousands of service men and women are on duty around the world during the holidays, our Republican congress men and women are using the holidays to delay and undermine the passage of important legislation. I don't understand why anyone making less than $250K would vote Republican. Republicans insist on reclaiming tax cuts for their wealthy friends and at the same time eliminate Social Security, Medicare, Unemployment compensation, the recent Healthcare Reform plan, income tax for the rich but keep it for us, lower taxes and/or subsidize corporations and CEO incomes, ship more jobs overseas to finally squash unions and the middle class, set up a South American style economy (a few rich families running the country and the rest of the population living in cardboard boxes), start a war with Iran that uses the lower classes to fight and bring big profits to the rich elite. Democrats need to stand up and fight for what they believe in and the press needs to do a much better job of holding congress accountable for their actions

    December 15, 2010 10:30 pm at 10:30 pm |
  6. Henry Miller

    Obama's presidency was effectively over on Novemver 2nd.

    December 15, 2010 10:37 pm at 10:37 pm |
  7. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    It won't be the end of the presidency, but it won't help it. If the members of Congress have a problem with legislation or policies, then they can go to the White House and voice their complaints.

    December 15, 2010 10:54 pm at 10:54 pm |
  8. Alex

    I'm a liberal who voted for Obama. Shoulda voted for Hillary.

    December 15, 2010 11:39 pm at 11:39 pm |
  9. bj

    Give me a break. I am so tired of these sorry, wimp of a politicians crying foul about Obama and his tenure. It is bad enough he has to deal with the bigots, he has to deal with weak Dems that shiver everytime the Repugs say boo! And CNN why do I have to look at Palin and that other woman everyday on your blog. Are you promoting her as well? Does she have someone writing a book for her, too, that your boss will publish?

    December 15, 2010 11:39 pm at 11:39 pm |
  10. Gussiie

    I'm a liberal who believes authentic liberals don't need another four years of this incompetent, compromising, hopeless leader.

    December 15, 2010 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  11. Orlando Patriot

    The end of the Obama presidency was LONG before now. His incompetent handling of the economy, pushing through a Health Care Law that the majority of the public didn't (and still don't) want, and his apologizing to the world for living in the greatest country in the world. No, his presidency is already over. One more catastrophy under his "leadership" (I can't hardly use the word "leader" and "Obama" in the same sentence without just rolling on the floor with laughter!!) won't make any difference. He is going down in history as the WORST president in the last hundred years. The ONLY person that can be happy about that is Jimmy Carter because now HE is no longer the WORST president in the last hundred years........

    December 16, 2010 01:23 am at 1:23 am |
  12. Commojoe

    The end of the Bozobama presidency? We could only hope it would be true, but the new congress coming in will at least put the brakes on this out-of-control fool and try to restore some sanity to the country's legislative process, hijacked by the far-left kook fringe

    December 16, 2010 02:05 am at 2:05 am |
  13. Cal

    If it is the end of his presidency at least go out as a Democrat and not a Republican Obama. It is a bad deal and against your principles. Do not allow the American people to be Blackmailed by extortionists. Stand firm and stand tall Obama. The American people are with you if you would only fight for them...

    December 16, 2010 02:13 am at 2:13 am |
  14. jules sand-perkins

    If the President really spoke of "the end of" his presidency, it was a childishly narcissistic way to express an ultimatum, relinqishing the authoritative power expected of a world leader. By speaking that way, Obama would be allowing himself to appear desperate to his party and to Congress.
    I do not want to believe that the President said what Rep. DeFazio reported, but I think that Obama did say it.
    Perhaps the President's resignation is imminent. Personally, I would welcome it, as I welcomed Nixon's resignation.
    I had high hopes for Obama's presidency when I made the mistake of voting for him, but he has not served us well.
    We can correct the Obama error in 2012, but his immature arrogance casts dark clouds over the scene for the remainder of his term. I am examining those clouds for the appearance of the formation of a funnel.

    December 16, 2010 02:40 am at 2:40 am |
  15. ddt

    DeFazio is right, this is a trap. This man has no borns in his body. Where are the so called super delegates? They chose this man and left a woman who would have done a better job. Yes, he helped them win several sits, the reverse is true, he helped them last mid term elections to lose them all. The idea that they wanted a blackman in the wwhite house now they are paying a price. The man is incapable of doing anything, I have never seen a president without power. The republicans are running the show. Pathetic.

    December 16, 2010 03:35 am at 3:35 am |
  16. terry, va

    The sky is falling, the sky is falling said chicken little Obummie.

    December 16, 2010 04:59 am at 4:59 am |
  17. Craig Mellor

    It is the end of the Obama Presidency anyway one looks at it. He is officially a lame duck President for the next two years. And many more Democrats will fall by the wayside in 2010 also, that is a promise! The American people are fed up with them. Now the big question is how many of the Republican insiders, old stalwarts, will also fall to the new wave of young and conservative politicans that have started to arrive? If the Republican old timers think they have a free rein now they are sadly mistaken.....we are watching them closely to see if they do what is right for the American Middle Class and for America or if they bow down to rich and crooked Wall Street investors and bankers and CEO's of large companies that are more interested in filling their back pockets and their stock holders bank accounts than in doing what is right for America. We can oust the likes of McConnel; Lindsey Graham; John Boehner; and the other old timers very easily!

    December 16, 2010 06:36 am at 6:36 am |
  18. dont care what you Demoncrates say

    Why care, the Dems are NO Better than rapists or Pediophils who rape America for their own satisfaction. We The People need to stop these rapists and pediophils from destroying America and raping our children of the American Dream. DOWN WITH ALL DEMS

    December 16, 2010 06:44 am at 6:44 am |
  19. Jerry

    DeFazio is probably jealous because he did not get the supposed call. I don't support President NObama, but moron DeFazio can't show any proof at all that the rest of the moronic Democrats are getting any calls either.

    I am a life-long Democrat, but what the Democratic MAJORITY are doing is harming the USA and is mostly child bickering. Nevadans should be embarrassed for reelecting senile Reed. Same thing goes for Californians. Boblehead/Plastic Pelosi come tomes to mind?

    God help America, PLEASE!

    December 16, 2010 06:44 am at 6:44 am |
  20. rand

    Why is this story NOT on the front page of the CNN web page??? Because liberals don't want to believe Obama could have fallen from grace so quickly..............

    December 16, 2010 07:29 am at 7:29 am |
  21. Bill

    This is why I don't trust politicians... particularly the liberal left. A truly biparisan effort is a TRAP?!?!?!?!?!?!? Get Real!

    December 16, 2010 07:49 am at 7:49 am |