Boehner warns Obama headed for 'brick wall'
January 28th, 2014
11:11 AM ET
10 months ago

Boehner warns Obama headed for 'brick wall'

Washington (CNN) – House Speaker John Boehner warned President  Barack Obama that he will "run into a brick wall" by using his executive power and bypassing Congress, as the White House has signaled the President intends to do.

"We’re just not going to sit here and let the President trample all over us," said Boehner.

"This idea that he's just going to go it alone, I have to remind him we do have a constitution. And the Congress writes the laws, and the President’s job is to execute the laws faithfully. And if he tries to ignore this he's going to run into a brick wall."

Boehner, speaking during an annual State of the Union day breakfast in his Capitol office with reporters, also said raising the minimum wage for new federal contractors, which the President is expected to announce tonight, won't have much real world effect.

"I suspect it affects absolutely no one," said Boehner.

His aides later clarified that he meant immediately, since the executive order will be for a minimum wage increase for new hires.

Boehner Says House Republicans Need to Get Back on Offense

The Speaker conceded that his party has spent so much time railing against the President's agenda, they have gotten off track over the last several years in putting forward their own policy prescriptions – something he hopes to help correct this year.

"As we look at this year I think we go back to what we did in '07,'08, 09, '10 and that is to be the party of better solutions. When I took over as leader in '07 I told our members you can’t go out there and criticize Democrats unless you tell them what you're for."

He said that will include a health care reform alternative to Obamacare, in addition to bread and butter issues of the economy, jobs, education, and infrastructure.

When asked if he was admitting Republicans were simply the party of "no" over the last several years, Boehner responded he “wouldn’t go quite that far, but we spent an awful lot of time in opposition as opposed to spending time on offense saying what we're for."

Boehner Tries To Set Welcoming Tone

The Speaker insisted there is common ground on many issues the two parties can find over the next year.

"Listen, just because we have divided government doesn’t mean that it has to be dysfunctional. As a matter of fact I would argue we've come a long way in the last few months," said Boehner, citing the budget agreement and spending bill which passed with bipartisan majorities. He also said he expects a bipartisan farm bill to pass this week.

"If the President is serious about a year of action it would be nice if he would just reach out and work with us," said Boehner, ticking off a list of issues he thinks they can find common ground, from trade promotion authority, energy, immigration reform, water infrastructure, patent reform, cyber security and more.

Boehner Relationship with President Obama

"It's perfect," is how Boehner responded to a question about the state of his relationship with Obama.

When that was met with laughter from reporters, Boehner quickly added "No, it is!"

"I know you don't believe this but he and I have a nice relationship. We talk on the phone from time to time. There's hardly a meeting at the White House where once it’s over he doesn’t pull me aside and we chat for another 10 minutes about whatever. We have a very nice relationship. We just don’t agree on a lot of big things"

Debt Ceiling Increase

Boehner continued to make clear he has no desire to wage a fight with the President next month on raising the debt ceiling, saying  "I want it dealt with sooner rather than later."

But he wouldn’t say whether that could mean passing a clean debt ceiling, which would almost surely only pass with significant Democratic support.

The President has made clear he will not negotiate over paying the country's bills, but House Republicans are worried about retribution from the conservative base if they vote to increase the debt ceiling without any concessions.

Still, House Republican leaders will discuss possible options to ask the President for in return for increasing the debt ceiling at their retreat later this week.

Boehner said some of the ideas they're kicking around are changes to federal health care law that many Democrats support, like doing away with a provision that gives government aide to insurance companies, known as the "risk corridor," doing away with the medical device tax, doing away with a fee that affects unions as well as small businesses, and more.

"The President has said he's not going to negotiate. After dealing with the President for three years on our debt and deficit it's clear he won’t touch our entitlement programs without an agreement to raise taxes. We're not going to raise taxes. I've also made clear through this entire three year fight that we're not going to default on our debt. We're going to have a discussion on Thursday with how to deal with it," said Boehner

Obamacare will "crash on its own"

Even so, Boehner said he does not believe the President or Senate Democrats will ever do anything to change the Affordable Health Care Act, because its "the President's pride and joy" but said he still believes it is unsustainable and will "crash on its own"

He joked about saying the blowback he got the day after election that Obamacare is the "law of the land"

"I never got slapped around more in my whole life...you'd think i had taken God's name in vein or something"

Shutdown – Lessons Learned

Boehner said he believes his members learned a lot from last fall's federal government shutdown, which he admits was a mistake.

"I tried to tell them this wouldn’t work," said Boehner, speaking of his discussions with his GOP rank and file who wanted to tie defunding Obamacare to funding the government, which led to the government shutdown.

What did House Republicans learn?

"They’re the ones in charge of their voting cards, no one else," Boehner said, including conservative outside groups who "need to be put in check.

soundoff (49 Responses)
  1. Wake up People!

    Good lord these GOP loons change daily. What is it exactly? One day it's 60 years of failed liberal policies, the next it's 80 and now today it's 100. Do you people just make this ish up as you go??? Will it be 120 tomorrow??

    January 28, 2014 12:27 pm at 12:27 pm |
  2. Thomas

    @Gunderson
    Well Lessee,
    After 100 years of Liberal Policies and now 5 years of Big Liberal Ideas some of you still can't see the forest for the trees. Now that all those big liberal ideas have went the route of the Soviet Union why do some of you want to continue them? The over 17 Trillion Dollar Federal Debt is no Mirage. The fact that all the big social programs are running (Actually) out of money still you ignore it. Look at Obama Care. The Experts said the Web Site was up and ready to go. Another big liberal success. When you look at Obama Care you are looking at the last 100 years of Liberal Politics. So sad.

    =====

    Do you still have your GW Bush bumper sticker on your Hummer ?

    January 28, 2014 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  3. 1st Ammendment Wimp

    A press core that only puts a microphone in front of Republicans [or Democrats] and ALLOWS THEM to spew their talking points, regardless of the lies, misrepresentations, falsehoods, misleading states, etc., is useless.

    What professional journalist, worthy of their college degree, would let Boehner say something like this unchallenged given the clear, demonstrated history of behavior by HIS Congress? Fire the person that wrote this story because it should have included Boehner's response when he was presented with the contradictory evidence.

    Oh, wait, never mind. That never happened, did it?

    January 28, 2014 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  4. Pam from Iowa

    "I tried to tell them this wouldn’t work," said Boehner, speaking of his discussions with his GOP rank and file who wanted to tie defunding Obamacare to funding the government, which led to the government shutdown.
    Obviously Boehner has not idea how to tell the truth. He cant even lie convincingly!!!

    January 28, 2014 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  5. Silence DoGood

    @Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Where's Our $24 Billion?
    This President has the least amount of Executive Orders than his republican predecessors. Now all of a sudden he's a dictator huh? Go blow it out your a$$. I hope the President asserts his executive power so much right now that his pen runs out of ink.
    -----------
    You didn't read the conservative agenda fine print: We don't like government spending and big government (unless it is for Our Agenda and for Our Programs). Note that 6 of Bush's executive orders was for "faith based" initiatives, essentially funneling money to Christian groups. Endorsing one religion, spending money, another federal program was OK then right?

    January 28, 2014 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  6. Lynda/Minnesota

    "Gee guys, you make our 5 with the wind chill factor here in Maryland sound almost tropical...almost!
    Be safe, be warm babes."

    We're at -8 ... (I gave up tracking the wind chill factor a month ago.)

    January 28, 2014 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  7. Silence DoGood

    @Wake up People!
    Good lord these GOP loons change daily. What is it exactly? One day it's 60 years of failed liberal policies, the next it's 80 and now today it's 100. Do you people just make this ish up as you go??? Will it be 120 tomorrow??
    -----------
    My personal favorite: Obama has not shown up, done nothing AND is controlling everything as dictator.

    January 28, 2014 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  8. Rudy NYC

    Gundersen(?) wrote:

    "... The over 17 Trillion Dollar Federal Debt is no Mirage. The fact that all the big social programs are running (Actually) out of money still you ignore it. Look at Obama Care. ..."
    ------------------------------------–
    I know that some would argue that it is [actually] the big defense programs that are running out of money.

    January 28, 2014 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  9. Silence DoGood

    @Thomas
    @Gunderson
    Well Lessee,
    After 100 years of Liberal Policies and now 5 years of Big Liberal Ideas some of you still can't see the forest for the trees. Now that all those big liberal ideas have went the route of the Soviet Union why do some of you want to continue them? The over 17 Trillion Dollar Federal Debt is no Mirage. The fact that all the big social programs are running (Actually) out of money still you ignore it. Look at Obama Care. The Experts said the Web Site was up and ready to go. Another big liberal success. When you look at Obama Care you are looking at the last 100 years of Liberal Politics. So sad.

    =====

    Do you still have your GW Bush bumper sticker on your Hummer ?
    -----–
    Appropriate since Bush's Iraq War based on Lies added a few billion into the debt!

    January 28, 2014 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  10. jrsgta

    congress destroyed the US. only thing congress dose is name roads and parks. MR. President start signing executive orders as much as you can. Wish he could executive order on a infrastructure bill.

    January 28, 2014 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  11. Sniffit

    "Don't forget the phony web sites to mislead people and the campus beer cozy campaign to stop young sign-ups and conservative h@ckers distributing attack software to crash the ACA site. We quickly get into some nasty stuff. They know it will not fail without sabotage."

    Indeed. It sort of falls into the same category or is the other side of the coin from Boehner's constant claims that things like "a clean debt ceiling increase" won't pass a House vote. Then, the GOP/Teatrolls desperately manipulate procedure and change the rules to assure that they can prevent any such vote from taking place because they know it would pass....thus causing the gov't to shutdown until they finally give up and let the vote take place. They assert something contrary to reality and then desperately try to manufacture and fabricate proof of it. "Gov't is broken...see, we broke it!!!!"

    January 28, 2014 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  12. Sniffit

    "My personal favorite: Obama has not shown up, done nothing AND is controlling everything as dictator."

    Add in "we're also heroes for blocking and obstructing everything he's tried to do" and you've got a perfect storm of conservative BS.

    January 28, 2014 12:55 pm at 12:55 pm |
  13. Sniffit

    "Don't forget the phony web sites to mislead people and the campus beer cozy campaign to stop young sign-ups and conservative h@ckers distributing attack software to crash the ACA site. We quickly get into some nasty stuff. They know it will not fail without sabotage."

    Indeed. It's sort of the other side of the coin to Boehner's constant claims that things like "a clean debt ceiling increase" won't pass a House vote. Then, the GOP/Teatrolls desperately manipulate procedure and change the rules to assure that they can prevent any such vote from taking place because they know it would pass....thus causing the gov't to shutdown until they finally give up and let the vote take place. They assert something contrary to reality and then desperately try to manufacture and fabricate proof of it. "Gov't is broken...see, we broke it!!!!"

    January 28, 2014 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  14. sammy750

    Speaker Boehner and the Republicans have been a BRICK WALL since 2008. They are the fighting party within. They cannot even agree with each other, making for a blocking party. Do nothing party. The Terrorist party

    January 28, 2014 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  15. Lolo

    This is not news. These Republican are really not doing their jobs. All of them need to be voted out period. Come mid-term voting they are going to get the shock of their lives when people will be coming out in droves to cast their votes. The game is over republicans. We know and the world knows that your antics are nothing but race driven period. See how they are turning their backs on J. McCain because he is not conservative enough for the GOP/TP Trolls? LOL!!!!! Lets vote the drunk and the rest of his cronies out. America will move forward with or without them. It is amazing that they need three people to oppose President Obama SOTU speech. I guess one for the libertarians, one for the TP nuts and one for the tamed GOP. Too funny!!! They are eating their own.

    January 28, 2014 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  16. Jeff Brown in Jersey

    I hope and pray that Democrats will come out en masse in November and VOTE!!!!! If they came out in 2010, we would not have to deal with these sociopaths!

    January 28, 2014 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  17. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Dutch correctly stated
    When history looks back on this Congress, they'll say it was the worst Congress ever because House republicans had no intention on working with the 1st African American POTUS just so they can nullify him and delegitimize his presidency
    -------------------------------------------------
    And even if the history books decide to re-write history and not be completely honest in their re-telling there are millions of us alive today who will tell our children and grandchildren exactly what you said because it is the truth and a shameful period in our democracy that must not be repeated under any circumstances.

    January 28, 2014 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  18. rs

    A positively great description of today's GOP- a brick wall to progress, recovery from their economic crash, or to a better life for Americans.

    January 28, 2014 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  19. The REAL Truth...

    @Dominican mama 4 Obama – And even if the history books decide to re-write history and not be completely honest in their re-telling there are millions of us alive today who will tell our children and grandchildren exactly what you said because it is the truth and a shameful period in our democracy that must not be repeated under any circumstances.
    -----------------------------
    Absolutely... and now the new GOP playbook page from the likes of Coulter an co.. is "we're the Uniter's!!"...
    Only those with an IQ lower than their age, and the usual sycophant lemmings will swallow that one... LOL

    January 28, 2014 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  20. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Jeff Brown in Jersey

    I hope and pray that Democrats will come out en masse in November and VOTE!!!!!
    -------------------------------------------------
    We've been mobilizing for months now Jeff, so from your mouth to the Democrat's ears and the ears of anyone else interested in removing these do-nothing, domestic terrorists from our midst.

    January 28, 2014 01:36 pm at 1:36 pm |
  21. rs

    Gunderson

    Well Lessee,
    After 100 years of Liberal Policies and now 5 years of Big Liberal Ideas some of you still can't see the forest for the trees. Now that all those big liberal ideas have went the route of the Soviet Union why do some of you want to continue them? The over 17 Trillion Dollar Federal Debt is no Mirage. The fact that all the big social programs are running (Actually) out of money still you ignore it. Look at Obama Care. The Experts said the Web Site was up and ready to go. Another big liberal success. When you look at Obama Care you are looking at the last 100 years of Liberal Politics. So sad.
    ______________________________
    Yeah, yeah, yeah. Has it occured to you that your fantasy world is just that- a fantasy? Has some rich man given you a job yet in exchange for all those tax breaks? Your fawning admiration of those who get special breaks (some might say "socialism") from the Right just because they are rich is really revolting. And look atwhat it got- a nation where we have the greatest number of millionaires and billionaires- ever- who think $7.50 an hour is "fair".
    Sorry, Gundy, you can keep repeating that opportunity is just around the next corner and you too can make millions- but for too many Americans- that just isn't so.
    Click you heels a few times and fly away- the adults need to make decisions now.

    January 28, 2014 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  22. MaryM

    So, Whats new with the republcians. They have been obstructing for years. That is all they know how to do. Obstruct.
    No ideas, just obstruct

    January 28, 2014 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  23. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    @ The REAL Truth...
    Absolutely... and now the new GOP playbook page from the likes of Coulter an co.. is "we're the Uniter's!!"...
    Only those with an IQ lower than their age, and the usual sycophant lemmings will swallow that one... LOL
    -------------------------------------------------
    We could go on forever with their ridiculous lies couldn't we Truth?
    They've been shamelessly accusing this man of dividing the country. Can you imagine a bigger lie?
    All one has to do is look at the pictures of President Obama's crowds at his speeches and various events (especially his campaign crowds both in '08 and in '12) to disprove that myth.
    Look at the members, millions strong, that comprise Obama for America, Move On and other organizations that support THIS President.
    Let's compare for laughs and giggles the crowds that were found at Romney's rallies.....
    Who's fooling who?

    January 28, 2014 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  24. Dutch/Bad Newz, VA -aka- Where's Our $24 Billion?

    Let's compare for laughs and giggles the crowds that were found at Romney's rallies.....
    Who's fooling who?
    ---------------------------------------
    It's like looking over the plains of the Rocky Mountains. I'm sure you get the analogy. lol

    January 28, 2014 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
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