Conservative groups come out against Boehner proposal
July 26th, 2011
05:53 PM ET
3 years ago

Conservative groups come out against Boehner proposal

Washington (CNN) - As House Speaker John Boehner and the House Republican leadership continues to build support for its proposal to raise the debt ceiling, several influential tea party and conservative groups Tuesday voiced opposition to it.

House GOP leaders are working the conservative members of their caucus to try and get enough support to reach the 217 votes needed to pass the Speaker's plan in a vote scheduled for Thursday. That proposal would couple $1.2 trillion in savings over a decade with a hike of just under $1 trillion in the debt limit that would extend it through the end of the year. It also calls for the formation of a congressional committee to find $1.8 trillion in deficit savings, and if that is enacted the debt limit would increase by $1.6 trillion.

"I do think that we're going to have some work to do to get it passed, but I think we can do it," Boehner told reporters Tuesday.

Many of these conservative groups and members only would support increasing the ceiling if it is accompanied by larger spending cuts as well as enactment of a balanced budget amendment while some others flatly oppose any hike.

Club for Growth, a national network of activists who promote economic growth and low taxes, announced Tuesday it was opposing the Speaker's plan. The group strongly backed the bill passed last week by the House that would have cut and then capped federal spending and pushed a balanced budget amendment.

"The Club for Growth strongly opposes the Boehner Debt Limit plan," Club for Growth President Chris Chocola said in a statement. "It cuts almost nothing immediately, it caps only discretionary spending, and it does not require passage of a balanced budget amendment. Additionally, and perhaps more importantly, it simply doesn't fix the country's fiscal problems. We strongly oppose it, and we urge a no vote."

It said a congressman's vote on this debt bill will be a key part of its legislative scorecard.

Meanwhile, two key tea party groups also are opposing the Boehner plan – the Tea Party Express and the Tea Party Patriots.

Several groups, including the Tea Party Express and American Grassroots Coalition, are planning a "Hold the Line" rally Wednesday on Capitol Hill. Among the featured speakers are: Sens. Jim DeMint, R-South Carolina, Sen. Mike Lee, R-Utah, and Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa.

The group said it thinks the elements of "Cut, Cap and Balance" "absolutely must be an intrinsic part of any plan to raise the debt ceiling, or it will not have the support of the tea party movement," Tea Party Express spokesman Levi Russell told CNN. He said the group is activating its members to attend the rally, and if they can't they should call their lawmakers.

"We've been saying we don't want a deal, we want a solution!" Russell said.

Another group, Tea Party Patriots, opposes any increase in the debt ceiling.

"Our local coordinators by 95% reject the proposal Speaker Boehner currently has on the table. It does not seriously address the overspending problems our government faces," Jenny Beth Martin, the co-founder and national coordinator for the group, told CNN. She said her group also has been urging its members to call Capitol Hill with the message: "Enough is enough. The American people will no longer stand for promises of the future. We demand real cuts and real action now!"

To try to assuage conservatives' concern, Boehner again called Rush Limbaugh's show on Tuesday saying Republicans won't give President Obama a blank check for spending and will not raise taxes as part of any deficit deal.

"It cuts $2.5 trillion from the discretionary portion of the budget over the next ten years, and puts spending caps in place that will make sure that that savings actually does, in fact, occur … [B]ecause the greatest risk to our country is not missing August the 2nd, the greatest risk is that we do not make the cuts necessary to put our financial house in order."

Seventy-four percent of tea party supporters would favor raising the debt ceiling if a balanced budget amendment were passed by both houses of Congress and substantial spending cuts and caps on future spending were approved. Seventy- four percent of tea party supporters also said in the same poll that they would oppose raising the ceiling several times in the next 18 months while cutting a smaller amount in government spending and not raising taxes.

CNN Congressional Producer Deirdre Walsh and Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser contributed to this story.

You can follow Kevin Bohn on Twitter @KevinBohnCNN


Filed under: Club for Growth • Debt • Deficit • John Boehner • Tea Party movement
soundoff (30 Responses)
  1. David Fitzgerald

    The Tea Party has really screwed this country and taken it's political system hostage. Another example of a good idea gone bad. They just don't know how to govern, and it's showing.

    July 26, 2011 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  2. Candy Taylor

    Who gives a rat's behind what the tea-party wants? Since when does a minority rule? Vote the nuts out they voted in in 2012!

    July 26, 2011 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  3. Squigman

    If this group gets it's way, the country will default with the consequences being felt in the form of a depression. The fact is, that these extreme factions, right or left are ruining capitalism as as well as democracy. They're just too focused on their own agenda to see what's really happening. WAKE-UP..

    July 26, 2011 06:07 pm at 6:07 pm |
  4. bj

    The Tea Pary that is financed by the Super Rich are going to have a rally? Ummm...those folks are so damn dumb they don't even know that their Medicare and Social Security Benefits will be cut. Now, since these 'enlightened' souls do not believe there is any crisis – let it expire and see what they have to say then. Hopefully it will also impact all of the idiots that voted for the Teabagger Caucus in the House.

    July 26, 2011 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  5. Ed

    You do know that SS is protected and everyone will get their checks.

    Again Obama is using scare tatics and to many people still thinks he can walk on water.

    Wake up America don't give him credit when he continues to push his agenda down our throats just like the Health Care Bill that nobody even looked at until it was passed. If anyone would take the time you would be able to see their are some many items that are in there that has nothing to do with health period.

    July 26, 2011 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  6. Sniffit

    Waterloo! LOLZ

    July 26, 2011 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  7. GOP = Greed Over People

    In the name of all that is Holy, NO short term "two step" program.

    If I have to listen to all this tea bagging drama again in six months, I will need a 12 step program!

    July 26, 2011 06:24 pm at 6:24 pm |
  8. Former Republican, now an Independent

    Let's be clear, it is my former party that got us in this mess. Ronald Reagan told the American public that deficits didn't matter, so he cut taxes and congress raised the debt limit 18 times at his request, funded by deficit spending. Government size grew to record numbers under Reagan and again under George W. Bush, who cut taxes, blew a budget surplus within months of taking office and for whom congress raised the debt limit 7 times at his request, funded by deficit spending. Mr. Bush also led us into 2 wars and his method of funding was deficit spending. Mr. Bush also created the prescription drug part D program and his method of funding was deficit spending. Mr. Bush and his revived Reaganomics and increased de-regulation nearly bankrupted the country, and now the republicans want to blame the current president for their mis-management of the country. Let's be perfectly clear, this problem has been created by the mis-guided policies and actions of the current day neo-con extremists that have conquered and destroyed my former party!!!

    July 26, 2011 06:40 pm at 6:40 pm |
  9. sue

    Well there you have it....it's all about what they want......not what the people of this country is telling them......you want it all but no Tax increases on the wealthy, or cutting the loopholes or doing away with the Tax Credits all these big corporations get.......well NO WAY JOSE........you people voted for these idiots in the House.....now we all have to suffer because they are acting like a bunch of SNOTTY NOSED KIDS........it's their way or the hiway......they are screwing America and every American.........

    July 26, 2011 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  10. The Greedy Old Pigs have declared class war on US!

    And the Radical Rightwing extremists once again try to impose their cult-based plan to serve the greedy and not the needy. This is all part of a long term effort by deeply corporatist billionaires who come from a line of families that still nurse a grudge against FDR. These people are truly vile and obviously un-Americans.

    July 26, 2011 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  11. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Rush Limbaugh might as well be running the congress, because Boner sure isn't.

    July 26, 2011 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  12. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    The tea baggers are crushing Boehner because he doesn't have the balls to stand up to them and if the GOP stands with Boehner we've got them right where we want them, out the door.

    July 26, 2011 07:07 pm at 7:07 pm |
  13. Thomas Mc

    Typical Republican policy: give tax loopholes to billionaires, and tax breaks to multinational corporations that ship American jobs overseas, then pay for it by taking food and medications away from the elderly poor.

    If that isn't DEMONIC, I don't know what is.

    July 26, 2011 07:09 pm at 7:09 pm |
  14. Rudy Braendle

    Mr. Boehner if you're looking for more spending cuts how about starting with Washingtons outrageous salaries and pensions instead of Social Security-Medicare-Medicaid -etc. It is disgusting to the "American People" how incompetent and useless our Politicians are in Washington not being able to compromise on any budget plan. "God help us all" – obviously you guys can't.

    July 26, 2011 07:15 pm at 7:15 pm |
  15. ED FL

    Boehner is in over his head. The position and pay require someone with knowledge ,tact ability to compromise.This guy belongs back behind[OR EVEN in front] of the bar. He is typical government employee who hangs around long enough to become a senior leader and they find out they are not as qualified as they think they are. Hopefully his constituancy in Ohio will see the real Boehner and get rid of him.

    July 26, 2011 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  16. Clwyd

    Good default and show that your main goals is a stubborn, no compromise, no negotiation approach to the ruin of America. We all need to see what the tea party stands for and it sucks!

    July 26, 2011 07:39 pm at 7:39 pm |
  17. GI Joe

    Good news for Cantor - Boehner will NOT be speaker next year.

    Bad news for Cantor - he will NOT be speaker next year either.

    Kick 'em all out. We got plenty done when we had a strong Speaker in the House.

    July 26, 2011 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  18. GI Joe

    Boehner has proven he cannot lead. So now, he can either follow or get out of the way. In fact, that pretty much sums up the entire Tea-bagging/Republican Parties.

    July 26, 2011 08:06 pm at 8:06 pm |
  19. Republican Robber Baron

    Short term deals are a waste of time. All these dishonest GOP goons ever do is kick the can down the road til the next election and blame the Dem's for their own problems. Get a grip Boener and just admit it was YOUR party that doubled defense spending, price-gouged taxpayers for spare jet engines that nobody asked for or needed, and raised the debt ceiling without cutting spending back when you had a $7 trillion tab.

    July 26, 2011 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  20. Ron

    How's that "primary objective" working out for you and Mitch? Looks more like your incompetence is going to make this both your careers in congress come to an end before the President's. Too late to stop the nonsense now, so I guess it is the scorched earth plan. That's OK too because you are ruining it for all republicans wanting to run for office after you two get fired. Make that three becasue Cantor's going with you!

    July 26, 2011 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  21. Ken in NC

    It can probably be said that House GOP Leader John Boehner is a leader without a House. The Tea Party has hijacked his House.

    July 26, 2011 08:36 pm at 8:36 pm |
  22. rene

    Boycott every Ohio based business until they impeach Boehner including Nationwide, Macy's, Goodyear Tire Co., Proictor & Gamble, etc.

    July 26, 2011 08:53 pm at 8:53 pm |
  23. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    The problem is that many conservatives don't understand what reactions would be and how this could affect those who are not as rich as many of these conservatives are. They don't care that it will wipe out lots of people's financial stability and the credit rating of the country (as well as states and their counties). There is taking a prinicipled stand and then there is doing it to an extreme like this is. Understand what must be done for the greater good at this point and fight the other fights later. Besides, where were these guys during George W. Bush's administration when they could have held the line with the debt ceiling and spending?

    July 26, 2011 09:53 pm at 9:53 pm |
  24. American Jim

    Could it be that the teabaggers caught a clue that their social security and medicare would also be taken away by Boehner's
    plan? Sometimes it takes a cutting off of the nose to spite your face before you realize when it comes to John Boehner and
    republicans, "Never smile at a crocodile".

    July 26, 2011 09:59 pm at 9:59 pm |
  25. Debra From Georgia

    These Republicans are crazy, they are trying to ruin economy, trying to stop us from voting.

    July 26, 2011 10:02 pm at 10:02 pm |
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