White House to Congress: Avoid the pain
July 31st, 2011
01:14 PM ET
3 years ago

White House to Congress: Avoid the pain

Washington (CNN) – Gene Sperling, the director of President Obama's National Economic Council, said Sunday the White House will accept a compromise that only contains mutually acceptable spending cuts, as part of the initial deficit reduction package.

Sperling, who has been at the center of the ongoing negotiations between the White House and Congressional leaders, said the second phase of the plan would tackle more significant deficit reduction, entitlement reform and tax reform that raises revenues.


However, the revenue increases would not take place over the next 18 months.

"The president, as you know, has been pushing very hard to cut taxes with the payroll tax cut extension for next year, because we want to make sure we're giving this economy as much momentum as possible," Sperling said on CNN's "State of the Union."

He also voiced his support for an enforcement mechanism to ensure the bipartisan group of lawmakers reaches an agreement over deficit reduction.

"You want to make it hard for them just to walk away and wash their hands," Sperling told CNN Chief Political Analyst Gloria Borger. "You want them to say, if nothing happens, there will be a very tough degree of pain that will take place."

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Filed under: Congress • Debt • Deficit • Gene Sperling • TV-State of the Union
soundoff (8 Responses)
  1. BILL, WI

    Today the WH said they would accept a compromise. Why did it take so long.

    July 31, 2011 01:27 pm at 1:27 pm |
  2. dcn236

    It's only compromise when the Repugs get spending cuts and the Democrats cave in to no increase in taxes for the wealthy.

    July 31, 2011 02:09 pm at 2:09 pm |
  3. Four and The Door

    This is the most sensible talk I have heard coming out of the Obama Administration. Ever. Gene Sperling is exactly correct and I am so pleased to see how this is working out. If the spending cuts are immediate and genuine, this is taking us in the right direction. I'm beginning to think the economy may have a fighting chance going forward. Excellent!

    July 31, 2011 02:15 pm at 2:15 pm |
  4. Henry Miller

    "...the second phase of the plan would tackle more significant deficit reduction, entitlement reform and tax reform that raises revenues."

    Entitlement "reform"–i.e., phasing it out completely, yes; raising revenue, no way. The federal government is already a gluttonous pig that needs to go on a starvation diet, not given more of the money Americans work to earn.

    July 31, 2011 02:57 pm at 2:57 pm |
  5. annie s

    Well, of course the White House will accept that. Obama has an excellent track record of shoving the Republican agenda down our throats.

    July 31, 2011 02:58 pm at 2:58 pm |
  6. Hammerer

    This is the healthcare process all over again. Back room deals to prevent a crisis. The politicans preform theaterics by passing bills in both houses then go to the back room in the dead of night and rape the taxpayers again.
    Will the sheep never learn?

    July 31, 2011 03:08 pm at 3:08 pm |
  7. Aaron

    And guess what? The second part will involve Obama caving to the Repubs once again, just like he is doing now. The reality is that Obama is too weak of a leader to ever get the rich to pay their fair share of the taxes again. Another Dem candidate next year might save some progressive votes, but we know that the party will not choose another candidate.

    July 31, 2011 03:18 pm at 3:18 pm |
  8. sara

    Where the the Revenue!!!!!! No deal without REVENUE. No one just cut when there's high unemployment!!! We need money to INVEST and bring this country Back. Send these republicans/activist home in 2012. America, YOU think it's bad....Just wait!

    July 31, 2011 03:28 pm at 3:28 pm |