October 6th, 2013
01:26 PM ET
11 months ago

Negotiations on shutdown, debt limit stalled

(CNN) – House Speaker John Boehner stated Sunday that a majority of his Republican colleagues continue to stand by their demand that any negotiations over reopening the federal government need to be tied directly to talks over Obamacare. The speaker also warned that Congress would not approve an increase in the nation's debt limit unless the president negotiated with congressional Republicans.

Boehner's comments come as Monday will mark the seventh day of the federal government shutdown. And to complicate matters, the White House has warned the country will no longer be able to meet its financial obligations unless its borrowing power is extended by Oct. 17. The speaker said it was imperative for the president to negotiate with Republicans.

"We're not going to pass a clean debt limit increase," Boehner said, appearing on ABC's "This Week." "I told the president, there's no way we're going to pass one. The votes are not in the House to pass a clean debt limit. And the president is risking default by not having a conversation with us."

Speaking on the government shutdown, Boehner said he stood with his fellow Republicans and emphasized that it was important to "stand and and fight" against the Affordable Care Act.

"I and my members decided the threat of Obamacare and what was happening was so important that it was time for us to take a stand. And we took a stand," the Ohio Republican said. Later in the interview, Boehner said Republicans were making this stand now because they believe the new healthcare law will have negative, long-term consequences for the country.

"I have 233 Republicans in the House," Boehner said. "And you've never seen a more dedicated group of people who are thoroughly concerned about the future of our country. They believe that Obamacare, all these regulations coming out of the administration, are threatening the future for our kids and our grandkids. It is time for us to stand and fight."

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi said Saturday that she has 195 House Democrats who would support a resolution in line with a budget that has received support from 21 House Republicans to fund the federal government. But, for now, Boehner seems to be dismissing this option.

"This fight was going to come, one way or another. We're in the fight. We don't want to shut the government down," Boehner said, pointing to a series of piecemeal bills the House has passed to fund certain parts of the government, but that the Democratic-controlled Senate refuses to take up. The speaker was particularly critical of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and he criticized Reid's negotiating tactic as "my way or the highway."

"That's what he's saying. Complete surrender and then we'll talk to you."

The Obama administration shot back in response to Boehner's comments on ABC in a tweet by White House Press Secretary Jay Carney following the interview.


Filed under: Government Shutdown • Healthcare • John Boehner
soundoff (212 Responses)
  1. Jim

    Holy cr..cow..They are going to default on the debt over the Affordable Care Act which is already line and wouldn't you know it, didn't bring with it the end of the world. This is disgusting, and the worst part is it is all possible only because of their insane gerrymandering.

    October 6, 2013 03:51 pm at 3:51 pm |
  2. Bryan Seifstein

    It would be nice if we could also bar all current members of congress from any political office but I do not think there is any method to accomplish this short of arresting all of them for Treason which many of them are coming very close to.

    October 6, 2013 03:52 pm at 3:52 pm |
  3. spencercourt

    IIf the situation were the Repubs had the Presidency, the House, and 55 in the Senate and the 45 Dems in the Senate said they would use the same tactic (shut government down and not raise debt ceiling) because they opposed a provision defunding Obamacare, what do you think Boehner and the GOP Senate Majority Leader would be saying? That's riight – EXACTLY what Obama and Reid are saying. And the Repubs wpuld be heaping all the "blame" on them.

    IA default? Bring it on! C'mon, I double dare you!

    October 6, 2013 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  4. dave b

    House Speaker John Boehner – speaking for the rest of the country – 'do whats best for America' (not just whats good for the republicans). It's time for the GOP to get the message (we are tired of you all acting like babies)!

    October 6, 2013 03:53 pm at 3:53 pm |
  5. ResearchGuy

    Rep Boehner, Let the House vote on the Senate Bill. You can fight the ACA later. In the mean time you are harming the US with your domestic political terrorism.

    October 6, 2013 03:54 pm at 3:54 pm |
  6. cbp

    Speaker Boehner has given one ultimatum after another. Unfortunately, he is not the leader of his Republican colleagues. He makes statements only to have to clarify them and cannot get a vote to end the shutdown. Get government back to work and then meet with the President. Both sides need to lay out their ideas and then work for a compromise under a win-win basis.

    The Republicans wanted to make Mr. Obama a one-term President. They did not succeed. What they are trying to do now is anyone's guess. Speaker Boehner's colleagues are afraid of the TEA Party members and will not vote against them. Therefore nothing is accomplished. Until Congress decides to work with Mr. Boehner and the Democrats nothing will be achieved.

    The greatest losers are the American people who are making less than seventy=five thousand dollars. Those who are not woking will be in financial trouble as will our financial stability. Republicans seem to want that to happen regardless of what you are saying. Actions speak for you. Let us get over this hurdle and move forward. You can make it happen and you will be a hero.

    October 6, 2013 03:55 pm at 3:55 pm |
  7. Gregory M. Newbold

    Mr. Boehner please tell me precisely what the additional dollars for the last det ceiling increase was spent on.

    I'm willing to bet it was for principle & interest on past pre-Obama National Debt [run up by Reagan, Bush, Clinton {no wait he had a surplus}, and Bush Jr.]

    I'm willing to bet that last debt ceiling money was spent to pay for 2013 deliveries of F-35 Joint Strike Fighters and MV-22 Osprey for the Navy & Marines which were approved for and ordered under George Bush.

    I'm willing to bet that part of the last debt ceiling increase went to pay Exxon Mobile, Shell & BP Oil exploration tax credits [something that Ted Cruz advocates for, I'm sure being from Texas}.

    None of these are Obama spending and it is a GOP LIE that the fight over the debt ceiling is a Republican effort to put some controls on a runaway spendthrift named Barack Obama. I just wish national journalists like Blitzer, Gregory, Wallace, Scheffer, Stephanopolous etc. would ask the Ted Cruzes, John Boehner's, Mitch McConnells and Eric Cantors, precise what is being paid for by these debt limit increases. That would educated the public.

    October 6, 2013 03:57 pm at 3:57 pm |
  8. Jimmy

    Why are these bums getting paid?

    October 6, 2013 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  9. Bridget

    This man is killing the United States of America. President Obama has negotiated and negotiated each and every time. He needs to stand his ground against these crazies! Boehner started this and if he had any sort of profile in courage, he'd end it! But, he doesn't. It's really awful and will kill us!

    October 6, 2013 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  10. Larry

    At this rate, since the Affordable Care Act is already funded, the ACA may become, ironically, the ONLY functional part of our government.

    October 6, 2013 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  11. Sick of it

    Glad to hear that they are ready to fight. It's been too long coming. The American government taxes too much and spends too much. Programs need cut or drastically trimmed and spending has to stop. The middle class has had enough.

    October 6, 2013 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  12. scott in ga

    "The votes are not int he HOuse to pass a clean bill" ..That is an outright lie. He know's it's a lie. He doesn't care if you know it' a lie. By using the Hastert Rule, he is silencing the dissenting voices. Any ramifications of their reckless, damaging behavior will be on the shoulders of Republicans and the Tea Party for the duration of American History. Boehner said it right though, that this is not a game.

    SHAME ON YOU

    October 6, 2013 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  13. Hillcrester

    Obama should tell Boehner to stuff it. Let's fail to raise the debt limit, giving Obama carte banche to decide what gets paid and what does not. It us time to excise the TP infection that has beset the GOP. Destroy them to save them, and take no prisoners.

    Boehner can't seem to figure out whether there is no chance they will allow a default or not raise the debt limit unless the ACA is damaged.

    Preserve the ACA at ALL costs!

    October 6, 2013 04:00 pm at 4:00 pm |
  14. tednugent'sdiapers

    1. Ban the Republican Party
    2. Let the red states secede
    3. Form two separate countries

    Problem solved!

    October 6, 2013 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  15. ME

    Get over it. The Affordable Health Care Act is in. People want it! The Supreme Court stood behind it, your 42 repeals
    have failed. If you want to save money cut yours and all your cronies pay and benefits and pay back the government
    for all the money you waste in your grandstanding and lies.

    The Gop and Tea Party are lackeys for the AMA, Insurance Co's. and Big Pharma. How much are you and your party gaining financially from all this at the expense of the people and country. You idiots are unpatriotic and need to back off
    and step down.

    October 6, 2013 04:02 pm at 4:02 pm |
  16. tet1953

    Boehner has totally lost control. Now he's totally contradicting himself one day to the next. Cruz and the Tea Party are going to put us in another recession at the least.
    Fareed Zakaria wrote a piece a couple days ago where he said if push comes to shove the President should just go ahead and borrow the money anyway, facing contradicting imperatives, collecting taxes and paying bills is the more substantive. I agree.

    October 6, 2013 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  17. jonathen

    There is no conversation to be had. It is your job to pass it, not Obama's. Obamacare is handoff.

    Taking that knowledge, do your job.

    October 6, 2013 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  18. bob

    I live in NE Ohio, and am looking at 60 in a couple of months. Up until Palin was the VP nominee, I voted for the GOP in every local, state, and national race. No more. I did not leave the party, the party left me. The tea party is beyond any rational and reasonable comprehension. They exhibit the same tendencies as the Taliban. I will never support any GOP candidate at any level as they cannot be trusted to do what is in the best interest of the country.

    October 6, 2013 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  19. the hippies were right

    Boehner says he doesn't have the votes, Pelosi says there are enough votes. Boehner can call for a vote, but won't. He could prove his argument but won't. Therefore it is obvious, Boehner is lying to us. Boehner also NEVER gives specifics as to why the ACA will destroy the world as we know it. He could prove his argument by listing a few authentic reasons this law is so bad, but he hasn't listed one. Therefore it is obvious, Boehner is lying. Boehner could drop this charade, allowing innocent people to get back to work and then take up this fight a few days later. But he isn't, therefore Boehner is lying to us. Boehner knows if the tables were turned and the senate was demanding a ban on gun purchases he would not negotiate. Therefore it is obvious Boehner is lying to us. Wake up Obama haters, Boehner is laughing at you!

    October 6, 2013 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  20. Thinking_citizen

    It is appalling how comfortable the Republican party is with an anti-democratic stance. You may disagree with Obamacare, however the fact remains that it was passed in both houses, upheld by the Supreme Court, and in a presidential election where one candidate (Obama) stood squarefoot behind this program whereas the other candidate who ran on the promise that he would rescind it (Romney), the former had a sound electoral victory.

    Because at this point all democratic remedies to win with their political position exhausted (until the elections in 2014 and 2016, that is), they turn to undemocratic means and try to extort the President to agree to their demands. If this flies, dear Americans, say goodbye to Democracy, because any small radical fringe group can then overturn the outcome of democratic elections.

    As for myself, I love Democracy and for this I am willing to accept that I am not always going to be able to get it my way. The Rebublicans apparently do not think Democracy is such a good idea after all...

    October 6, 2013 04:07 pm at 4:07 pm |
  21. Ché

    No Boehner... It was time to sit and heal, but you chose the consequences of standing and fighting.

    Remember, it was your choice.

    October 6, 2013 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  22. mindstorms

    Fun watching the GOP commit suicide.

    October 6, 2013 04:08 pm at 4:08 pm |
  23. A

    Boehner is full of it. It's quite clear that the Republicans never intended to compromise with the Democrats on the issue of Obamacare (which, in my opinion, is NOT going to harm our future generations) and are using this shutdown to make it seem like Obamacare is this evil monster that needs to be taken down.

    If Republicans are so "concerned with the future of our country" why are they so unwilling to let their egos take a backseat and meet the Democrats halfway? It's not as if it's physically impossible. They simply don't want to give up any ground because of something as ridiculous as personal pride. Or money.

    I wonder how many of these already wealthy Republicans in Congress have a stake in private health insurance businesses?

    October 6, 2013 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  24. george

    If the ACA is so terrible, why didn't the republicans defeat it before it was passed? Or why didn't they introduce a bill to repeal it? They've had plenty of time to do that.

    This strategy was poorly conceived and risks pitching the nation back into recession.

    October 6, 2013 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  25. Aj

    A utter disgrace to our country to NOT listen to the American People. This clown doesn't have a clue.

    October 6, 2013 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
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