House Republicans launch their own PR offensive on fiscal cliff
November 27th, 2012
03:39 PM ET
5 years ago

House Republicans launch their own PR offensive on fiscal cliff

Washington (CNN) - As President Obama kicks off a series of events and meetings this week to pressure Congressional Republicans to reach a deal to avert the fiscal cliff, top House GOP leaders are planning their own public campaign to frame Democrats as the ones who are unwilling to budge.

House Speaker John Boehner's office announced Tuesday that leaders and rank and file Republicans will roll out a series of events in Washington and in their districts across the country with small business owners to frame Democrats demands to oppose upper income tax cuts as a threat to new jobs.

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Although GOP aides stress the outreach was in the works before details of the President's campaign-style efforts were outlined, they aren't hiding the fact that they don't appreciate the White House effort to try to box them in on taxes.

The top Senate Republican slammed the President's decision to travel to Pennsylvania for a public event on the fiscal cliff on Friday.

"Rather than sitting down with lawmakers of both parties and working out an agreement he is back on the campaign trail presumably with the same old talking points that we are all quite familiar with," Senate GOP Leader Mitch McConnell said on the Senate floor.

The post-election tone of compromise that leaders from both parties stressed as they predicted a compromise was close at hand appeared to fade as McConnell questioned whether the President was capable of working across the aisle.

"We already know the president is a very good campaigner. We congratulate him on his re-election. What we don't know is whether he has the leadership qualities necessary to lead his party to a bipartisan agreement on big issues like we currently face."

Boehner's spokesman suggested the President's focus was misplaced.

"The target of the president's rallies should be the congressional Democrats who want to raise tax rates on small businesses rather than cut spending," said Michael Steel in a written statement

House leaders from both parties are meeting separately on Wednesday with several CEOs involved in the "Fix the Debt" coalition that is pushing for a deal to avoid the year end fiscal cliff. House Republican Whip Kevin McCarthy announced that GOP leaders will meet with small business owners next week in his office.

While President Obama continues to argue that allowing the tax breaks for the wealthiest Americans to expire should be part of a deal, GOP leadership aides are preparing talking points and events with local businesses to hammer home their argument that tax rate increases will cost more jobs.

Republicans on Capitol Hill also complained that the major focus on the negotiations was on how willing GOP members were willing to give in on taxes while Democrats continued to dig in on opposing any major structural changes to entitlement programs. They maintain their offer to give some on revenue should be met with some flexibility on changes to Medicare and Social Security.

This was one message GOP leaders planned to deliver to the CEOs attending Wednesday's meeting on Capitol Hill.

One senior GOP aide summarized the appeal from GOP members to business leaders, "when you guys are pushing a balanced approach don't forget about spending. Let's not keep this whole entire conversation centered on tax rates."

Filed under: 2012 • House Republicans • John Boehner
soundoff (51 Responses)
  1. John

    You Republican are the one that won't move on rising taxes on the Rich. You don't hear any Democrats sighing any Pledges. You republican need to break the Pledge that you really shouldn't have sigh In the First place. The Republican are till the p[arty of NO. What does Grover Norquist have on you Republican any way, It got to be more that just that you sigh a Pledge. Because It doesn't seem to worry about the Oath you took.

    November 27, 2012 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  2. Lynda/Minnesota

    Where are all the jobs that Bush's tax cuts produced when he first offered his cuts during his years as President?

    November 27, 2012 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  3. sarge from Utah

    Mealy mouthed Mitch and John Groaner are up to their double- dealing tricks again! They are oblivious to the needs of the public, and will drive us off the cliff for political gain!

    November 27, 2012 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  4. Ray E. (Georgia)

    What Fiscal Cliff? Who was it that said, THE PRIVATE SECTOR IS DONG FINE. Which Repubilician said that?? I think it was Harry Truman that said, I don't give em hell, I just tell the truth, they think it's hell. I'm sorry, I can't remember which Republician said that. President Kennedy said, THINK NOT WHAT YOUR COUNTRY CAN DO FOR YOU, BUT WHAT YOU CAN DO FOR YOUR COUNTRY. The only thing he forgot to add was send money. None of you sent the money and look where we are. Did you buy a Pig in a Poke? Did you?

    November 27, 2012 04:30 pm at 4:30 pm |
  5. alfred

    If you keep prptecting 2%, the republicans will meet the same fate as a lot of the teaparty right wing nuts. Keep it up and welcome to the the party of rich old white men. Dont count on winning any more presidential elections in the future.

    November 27, 2012 04:31 pm at 4:31 pm |
  6. Jeremiah

    The GOP is at a disadvantage on the tax break issue for one very important reason. There are a lot more people who make less than $250,000 than there are people who make more. If the people who make less blame the GOP for allowing their taxes to increase, they may very well vote against them in the next election. No matter what they say, politicians care more about themselves and lining their pockets with tax dollars than anything else.

    November 27, 2012 04:32 pm at 4:32 pm |
  7. Boo

    Well I do have to agree...the GOP is offensive.....and had no problem spending money when Bush was president....

    November 27, 2012 04:33 pm at 4:33 pm |
  8. kathy

    It is in the best interest of our nation that the GOP work with the President and the Democratic majority in the Senate. The nation is being held hostage with your pledgesto sepcial interest groups and the electorate knows that. We have waged 2 wars in the last decade. With my budget, I can not cut revenue and increase spending and make it work – unless I want to cut my bare necessities. The same is tru for the federal budget. I urge the GOP to quit postering abd begin working.

    November 27, 2012 04:35 pm at 4:35 pm |
  9. Gary Street

    If the congress had not embezzled from the Social Security Trust Fund every year to pay for their spending, Social Security would still have enough money to pay for all current and future beneficiaries. Any other agency that raided a trust fund as they did Social Security, would be locked up in jail.
    Don't pretend that the program could not fund itself and needs to be modified. Pull your heads out of your butts and start doing your jobs for America.

    November 27, 2012 04:36 pm at 4:36 pm |
  10. Darrell

    freedom,,,,if anything you said was true, Romney should be president-elect and the GOP would be controling both houses of Congress on Jan. 1st 20013. Guess you are not speaking the truth, because Romney lost, big time, and the Dems. not only control the Senate, but picked up three extra seats. Just saying.

    November 27, 2012 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  11. 2km N of GZero

    Typical Republican: if the data don't square with the faith, throw out the data. How's that no-data tactic been working for ya?

    November 27, 2012 04:39 pm at 4:39 pm |
  12. FactCheck

    Cue... tax cuts for the rich, increase in military spending, send bill due to the middle class.

    Didn't they try this a few weeks ago, oh, say before Nov 6? How did that turn out??

    November 27, 2012 04:40 pm at 4:40 pm |
  13. coinrat2

    I am not rich, but have been blessed and doing ok. But being from the country, I am reminded of the old saying. Having the GOP raise taxes on the rich is like asking the chicken to cut off its own head. The 5% in this nation would rather see the rest of us fail than give up a little more. Remember before WWII, while we don't like to admit it, this was a nation and a world of Classes. Upper and Lower, Middle class just towed the line. This is what the GOP would like to have again. They want to make it harder for the lower class to move up to the middle class and the middle class to have no chance unless by luck to make it into the upper class. When will they wake up, what will it take? A coup, A revolution, Another Civil War? Let's hope they smarten up and soon, time is running out. Not just for Washington Politicians, but for all of Americans. And the way America goes so does much of the World. Scary!!!

    November 27, 2012 04:41 pm at 4:41 pm |
  14. Wellywellup

    Welcome fiscal cliff. The GOP will never sign off on higher taxes for the rich, that is who pays them. So taxes will need to be forced on them and I am pretty sure Obama has already figured out how to manage the spending side so the pain is not as bad as it might be. The GOP will blame Obama, the economy will continue to improve regardless, and the GOP will flushed completely in two years.

    November 27, 2012 04:42 pm at 4:42 pm |
  15. maf

    @ freedom – wow, angry much?? Were you Four before the election? Your weirdly guided rant hardly bears any semblance of sanity, let alone reality. Democratic conspiracies . . . give it a rest!! The GOP have a chance to improve upon their 13% approval rating in the House. . . time to get started!!

    November 27, 2012 04:46 pm at 4:46 pm |
  16. Marie

    As usual the petulant man-children on the Right haven't been able to lie, manipulate, cheat, steal or bully with the same bravado they've had in the House since 2010 when it comes to their position of power on this issue so now they are going to copycat the President's example (like always in some form because they are individuals without originality) to get their message out. The problem is their message is already out and clearly rejected on Nov. 6th. They are back to the playground games as before because to act like true adult men is harder and would require integrity and a moral compass. The denial on the Right is beyond frightening in that the psychosis many are suffering from seems almost absolute in never being cured even by the few sane that still remain in their party and want to save and preserve it. No nevermind, They work for the coporations and the President works for the people. Lets just see who truly is the richer. Fiscal cliff or bust.

    November 27, 2012 04:48 pm at 4:48 pm |
  17. Wilson

    I don't understand you on the left. The dividends a lot of rich (and not so rich, anyone that owns even one stock that pays dividends) receive are already taxed once, then taxed again at a slightly lower rate. So you want the money taxed once at 35%, then again at 35%? (or whatever tax rate you are wanting). Hmmm, now that doesn't really seem very fair.

    November 27, 2012 04:49 pm at 4:49 pm |
  18. John Deerek

    what are the key difference between a Republican Extremist and a Terrorist?
    – One speaks English, the other one speaks Arabic.
    – One uses Bomb and Violence to terrorise and kill, the other one uses Money and Power to accomplish the same goals.

    November 27, 2012 04:50 pm at 4:50 pm |
  19. REGinAZ

    It seems obvious that Rice just retold information that was given her and it is also just as obvious that Graham, McCain and the Republicans are once again playing the Republican game of stubbornly blocking and arrogantly faulting whatever they can, solely for their political purposes, without ever having any real concern for the people's interests.  How can we ever expect them to get down to working with bipartisanship to resolve problems with compromise and cooperation instead of obnoxiously and belligerently always being totally irresponsible in wasting time pursuing only their own political interests, being totally without conscientious concern for doing their job for the people.  It use to be that as common courtesy and for the good of the country the opposite party to the President would try to give the President his choices for appointments, thus giving him/her the opportunity to have a good working administration – today the Republican Party has become totally obnoxious and completely self-serving while attempting to aggressively fight, fault and block every step, thus constantly forcing government into a total non-productive gridlock.  Can't get more disgusting and irresponsible than that.

    November 27, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  20. REGinAZ

    It is a sickness, literally representing a long-running cancer in our society. Today most see him as a man, a sports enthusiast who prefers and has skills in basketball, a father who is devoted to his two girls, a loving husband loyal in a fantastic marital relationship, a gentle person with real compassion for others. a Christian in speech and behavior who doesn’t force his values on others, in every respect just a true American, and then also our President, who has major challenges he consistently responds to with a sincere conscience ... yet there are those sick individuals who can only see him as a black man who they won’t accept as representing them. Often they deny, even to themselves, their controlling bias but the racial slur is apparent at the base of their discontent, obvious in the absence of any sound logic in their rationalizations – such as “he is a Muslim”, “he wasn’t born in America”, ,,, and “his policies are too Socialistic”, as they completely ignore that “big government”, government spending and the deficit, while important to get under control, didn’t cause our problems and rather that in every case permissive policies, offered as “conservative”, did by allowing and encouraging repeated, costly exploitation by the advantaged few.

    Never before has a President had to put up with such abuse and stupidity: it is a shame these people are given a voice. There are those who enflame this sickness for their own purposes, even as their self-serving efforts cost the people and the country greatly; the media can even condone it by giving it attention without clearly acknowledging it as the negative it is; and they themselves reject all common sense and aggressively feed off each other’s venom, always furthering the ignorance. The President gets all of their blame, even after he actually inherited the problems and his opponents continually fight to stubbornly block and arrogantly fault all efforts, contributing absolutely nothing, constantly withholding cooperation and compromise, all without any conscience or concern for the people, pursuing their political ambitions and only serving “the money”, their strong supporters and masters. No one is ever perfect but, with the biases, prejudices and the blind concentration on self-interests put aside, it is obvious a better representative would be hard to find. Not only do these people insult themselves with their sick ignorance but their actions simply ridicule America on the world’s stage. It is about time we came into the 21st century with acceptance of all people and drop the egotistic pretense that some are elite – racially, religiously or even financially.

    November 27, 2012 04:55 pm at 4:55 pm |
  21. nothing new here

    Boy, it just never seems to end with these people.
    What is it going to take for Americans to vote these bums out of office once and for all?

    November 27, 2012 04:58 pm at 4:58 pm |
  22. Mike

    Right. That's what the GOP needs- a PR campaign!!! Geeze. Do you think they will ever realize their problem is the message, not the delivery?

    November 27, 2012 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  23. Rick McDaniel

    Obama has NEVER compromised........and he never will.

    November 27, 2012 05:03 pm at 5:03 pm |
  24. Sniffit

    "When will they wake up, what will it take?""


    November 27, 2012 05:04 pm at 5:04 pm |
  25. Hammerer

    Obama's base, people that have never held a job and never will, welfare lifers, gays, illegals, women that only worry about abortion, are demanding tax increases for all that work.
    Let the country go over the "cliff" and into recession. The loud mouths that demand their fair share will then need to proved for themselves. That will mean go to work to eat.
    Time to call the Obama's bluff and let the left base support his dreams.

    November 27, 2012 05:05 pm at 5:05 pm |
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