November 4th, 2012
06:20 PM ET
1 year ago

FIRST ON CNN: Boehner expects temporary fix to avoid fiscal cliff

Wadsworth, Ohio (CNN) – Throwing cold water on any major effort during the lame duck Congress to reach a deal that would avert the fiscal cliff, House Speaker John Boehner told CNN on Sunday the best outcome would be some sort of temporary fix to postpone the cuts, but admitted even that would be tough to get through.

Sitting down for an interview with CNN at a sports bar in Ohio, Boehner said "lame duck Congresses aren't known for doing big things and probably shouldn't do big things, so I think the best you can hope for is a bridge."

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Boehner, who was on the second day of statewide bus tour campaigning for GOP presidential ticket, declined to give any details but said he expected said "some kind temporary push back of the sequester."

"I would think that would be the best you can hope for, and even that is going to be very difficult to do," he said.

Congress faces an end-of-the-year deadline before an enormous amount of spending cuts kick in and tax breaks begin to expire, including the Bush-era tax cuts at the end of December. The fiscal cliff also includes the so-called sequestration, automatic across-the-board spending cuts set to trigger at the beginning of 2013 if Capitol Hill fails to create a deficit-reduction plan.

The Department of Defense would especially see a big cut–about 9.4% of its budget would be slashed and be reduced to $491 billion from $554 billion in 2013, the Congressional Budget Office projects.

President Barack Obama's recently predicted in an interview that he could get a "grand bargain" with Congress, negotiating a deficit reduction plan of $2.50 in spending cuts for every $1 in new revenue. Boehner, however, said "I don't think that's big enough."

The speaker repeated the same line in the sand that he has put down in previous talks on any deficit deal.

"I made it clear that any increase in the debt limit – the cuts and reforms have to be greater than the increase in the debt limit. How many times do we want to deal with the debt limit over the next four years?" he said.

Asked about the political dynamics if president Obama wins and Congress remains divided with a GOP House and Democratic Senate, Boehner said he's a "reasonable" guy but needs people in the Senate and in the White House "who will work with me."

"So if there's a status quo election, there's going to be an awful lot of responsibility on the president to finally lead instead of squandering his opportunity at being president," he said.


Filed under: Debt • Deficit • John Boehner
soundoff (25 Responses)
  1. Hotdog

    I wish Boehner and the remaining of his Republican cohorts would stop playing politics and come up with a permanent solution to this issue. This is some thing that is achievable and the people that they are serving are sick and tired of the foolishness.

    November 4, 2012 06:46 pm at 6:46 pm |
  2. Francisco

    You better do something, even if temporary, because America knows that you put us hostage... And if you have made the worse job in the last 2 years possible, but now the senate chairs are turning against you, and if you want to make something happen, make it now, because right now, the democrats are taking over, and if lame duck does something better than what you did in the last 2 years, then we will finally realize that you DID have an effort and avoided because you just did not like Barack Obama. Your clock is ticking. The nation will change dramatically in only two years if the democrats take over congress. Dramatically for the good. Instead of saying that the President could not work with the Republicans, or could not work across the isle, We americans don't see it like that. We see that YOU could not work with the president and YOU could not work across the isle....... Well, didn't that plan backfire! Because everything is turning around, and we can finally move forward more than we already did even with the republicans opposition.

    November 4, 2012 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  3. Pete

    Boehner and the rest of these traitors called republican congressmen better watch out because of a petition going around charging them with violations in signing the Norquist pledge saying its against the constitution because of putting the pledge before the good of the people,that's being a traitor in most peoples books,including mine!!Read up its going around,I've signed it!!

    November 4, 2012 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  4. erwer

    And what decisions there can be? A year ago, when a debt ceiling was lifted, reduction of expenses from the 2013th was a main precondition. It can be cancelled now? But same there will be the real clownery. Besides, I don't think that not reduction of privileges will exclude falling of real gross domestic product (if to take away real inflation). Simply gross domestic product will fall together with dollar. There is a month to the next raising of a debt ceiling, and Chinese already say that will get rid from tresures.

    November 4, 2012 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  5. traductio2

    still playing to the right wing base as if nothing happened... I wonder why republicans just can't stop kneeling to the tea party. Haven't they done enough damage? Aren't you happy with the cut in rating you caused because of posturing? Start talking about rebuilding America back to its greatness instead of playing opportunistic political ploys!
    That should be enough of a reason for anyone to vote for Democrats instead of republicans.

    November 4, 2012 06:57 pm at 6:57 pm |
  6. GI Joe

    Typical republican - keep kicking the can down the road, costing us even more in interest payments.

    Raise taxes on the wealthiest and cut subsidies for big corporations and take that money to pay off the debt. Simple.

    November 4, 2012 06:58 pm at 6:58 pm |
  7. GI Joe

    The cost of two unfunded wars needs to be paid - and not by seniors. Let the republication corporation owners pay for it - they profited by it.

    November 4, 2012 06:59 pm at 6:59 pm |
  8. Woman In California

    This coming from the town drunk and how appropriate that he speaks from a bar.

    I sure would like to see the following happen on Tuesday.

    1) Willard and Ann sent packing;
    2) Ryan lose BOTH jobs; and
    3) Boehner sent back to the bars.

    Talk about a TRIPLE goodie. Only can only hope.

    November 4, 2012 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  9. CBP

    Lame duck congresses are not known for doing anything. Mr. Boehner is correct. However, it appears that this last Congress was more lame than most. They did not do much of anything. Under Mr. Bloehner's leadership Congress just got paid for doing nothing. If you were to match pay with time worked we would probably find that our Congress was paid for doing very little. Why should they be re-elected.

    November 4, 2012 07:38 pm at 7:38 pm |
  10. Pete

    Boehner wants to kick the can down the road again,you've tried it before and you'll try again won't yah!!

    November 4, 2012 08:14 pm at 8:14 pm |
  11. fernace

    The hold up is the same as it's been for the past 2 yrs! The divisive GOT-Party in congress refuses to give up the tax cuts for the 1%! They signed a pledge & it's more important to them than taking us off a fiscal cliff! Plus it has the added effect of making Obama seem unreasonable & so it's perfect for their agenda! I can only hope Americans are tired of congress behaving like spoiled brats & have voted in people, Dems & Repubs, who are reasonable & want to go to work! The Extremist T-Party has to go! Obama/Biden Next 4!!

    November 4, 2012 08:16 pm at 8:16 pm |
  12. Observer

    This man who said on the floor that they would do nothing to help this president could find himself in a whole lot of hurt if Mr. Obana retains the white house, becuse the next election will be theirs and if they want to stay on office, well they had better belly up to the bar or all those republicans are pooched.

    Just Saying

    November 4, 2012 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  13. rs

    At the first hint that Boehner and the Republicans reveal that they are once again negotiating in bad faith- Jail- until they fix their little problem. It is time for the GOP members of the House put coutry first over the needs of their pathetic party.

    November 4, 2012 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  14. enuff

    Boehner needs to go away. he is one of the major reasons the U.S. is in the shape it is in and why sequestion even came into play. He has no backbone to stand up for what is right for the american people. He is too easily bought and sold by private interests.

    November 4, 2012 09:50 pm at 9:50 pm |
  15. Wire Palladin, S. F

    Boehner's congress is incapable of doing anything productive.

    November 4, 2012 10:38 pm at 10:38 pm |
  16. S.B. Stein E.B. NJ

    The problem is that Beohner couldn't sell it to the teapublicans. That is a good reason why it couldn't pass the House; Beohner couldn't convince enough of his own party to accept the plan he worked out in good faith.

    November 4, 2012 10:39 pm at 10:39 pm |
  17. Vote for Seamus, elect Kolob's next dog catcher

    "The fiscal cliff", it is going to be the bitter pill the tea party brought.
    The debt crisis, the 21st century size depression.

    vote republican, outlaw science, they got change going backward in their conservative image

    November 5, 2012 01:50 am at 1:50 am |
  18. 111Dave111

    Republican House Speaker John Boehner told CNN on Sunday the best outcome [to the fiscal cliff] would be
    some sort of * temporary fix * to postpone the cuts.

    No wonder nothing gets done in Congress.

    Re-Elect President Obama 2012.
    Please Vote !

    November 5, 2012 02:43 am at 2:43 am |
  19. Anonymous

    temporary fix? is that supposed to make us happy? Just more partisan bickering and kicking the can.. better to go off the cliff than to be appeased by such BS. Truly , American people are the hostages

    November 5, 2012 05:41 am at 5:41 am |
  20. NATHAN WIMBERLY

    The cuts include no security in Libya again. Time to sweep the unhinged GOBP tea potty OUT of the government that they hate so much. They hate the American people when they hate our government.

    November 5, 2012 06:05 am at 6:05 am |
  21. Gary

    Wonder when these yahoos are going to get off their backsides and pass a real budget? Any one of US would be fired for NOT doing our jobs for so many years.

    November 5, 2012 06:32 am at 6:32 am |
  22. sifto

    and Reid makes it clear that he will not work with Repubs under any circumstances–says it is laughable...

    November 5, 2012 06:56 am at 6:56 am |
  23. jkane sfl a vote for lady parts romney the tax cheat and lyin lady parts ryan willcut your moms medicare and soc sec . .can you afford to pay for them???

    The gop says they need somebody to work with me,what they mean by that is agree to everything we want or it won't pass ,the gop is totally responsible for gridlock in Washington ,and this is the reason for it and the dumb voters probably sent these same gop teaparty losers back and then blame the president ,even boner can't control them to make ant progress ,voters, blame yourselves!!!

    November 5, 2012 08:07 am at 8:07 am |
  24. JoshN

    Good job Mr Speaker – kick the can down the road...again. That's leadership for ya. Cry that the Senate and the President won't work with you and kick it down the road. It's called compromise, sir. Focus on fixing the economy with the leadership that's in place. You've tried for four years now to sabotage the Oval Office and it hasn't worked. Reach across the aisle and show some leadership please.

    November 5, 2012 09:07 am at 9:07 am |
  25. Anonymous

    what a jerk.. The debt limit was no big deal during Bush yeas with unfunded wars

    November 5, 2012 10:55 am at 10:55 am |