Cantor: 'The debt limit vote sucks'
July 26th, 2011
01:07 PM ET
11 years ago

Cantor: 'The debt limit vote sucks'

Washington (CNN) – House Majority Leader Eric Cantor had some choice words on the debt ceiling vote for other Republicans during a closed door meeting Tuesday.

"The debt limit vote sucks," the Virginia Republican declared directly to members during the House GOP conference meeting, according to two sources behind the closed doors.

In his remarks, Cantor encouraged members to rally behind the plan proposed by Republican leadership in the House. He was joined by House Speaker John Boehner and House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-California. The members were told the new House GOP bill will come up to vote Wednesday and that the House will also vote separately on a balanced budget amendment bill later this week, the sources said.

"It comes down to the people in this room. It comes down to the willingness to stand together. This is the path to victory for the American people," Speaker Boehner said, according to the sources.

After the huddle with House GOP rank and file, Boehner admitted to reporters that not everyone in his party is falling into line.

"I do think that we're going to have some work to do to get it passed, but I think we will," he said.

And Ohio Republican Rep. Jim Jordan, who heads the group of fiscal conservatives in the House and is opposed to Boehner's proposal, said Tuesday that right now the speaker's proposal can't pass with just Republican votes: "I am confident as of this morning there were not 218 Republicans in support of the plan."

But Cantor praised Boehner in the meeting, the sources said, saying he did an amazing job and that conference is behind him 150 percent.

According to one aide, Cantor outlined three choices for the members. He said they could run over the August 2 deadline, risk default and face the unknown. Or, second, vote through Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's plan giving what they see as a "blank check" to the president. And finally, their preference, pass a plan consistent with what they see as their principles and that forces the president to debate entitlements, taxes and spending in six months.

According to one aide, the message from Cantor to House Republicans critical of the plan was "to stop grumbling and whining and to come together as conservatives and rally behind the speaker and call the president's bluff."

Republican Rep Charlie Dent, who represents a swing district in Pennsylvania, told members it's time to govern and avoid default, the sources said.

Republican Rep. Allen West of Florida also spoke in support of the leaders' plan.

New Jersey freshman Rep. Jon Runyan, an imposing figure as a former NFL football player, told the speaker "I've got your back" and the response from Boehner was "good" – as their GOP colleagues laughed.

Filed under: Congress • Eric Cantor • House • Republicans
soundoff (251 Responses)
  1. Lost in Texas FOREVER

    yet they had little to no problem voting for it 7 times under President Bush with little to no hesitation. LOL Go figure!!

    July 26, 2011 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  2. Malty

    Why are so many liberals and democrats so opposed to reducing the deficit, spending money that we have, cutting out those wasteful programs that we can't afford and being self-reliant. When I come to the CNN boards, all I hear is hate, slander and blame–mostly from the left (I think that many are professional, basement bloggers, but am not sure).

    The US needs to spend less, be accountable and pay off debts. Legislation needs to focus on the problems (republican solutions) and not the symptoms (Obama's solutions).

    July 26, 2011 01:12 pm at 1:12 pm |
  3. Jo

    Playing such despicable politics with the US debt is treasonous. Who needs terrorists when our very own Teapublicans are torpedoing our nation?

    July 26, 2011 01:14 pm at 1:14 pm |
  4. gt

    harry reid needs to pay back the billions on yuca mnt waste a thon...americans dont trust either party.. were get screw by who ever is in power..

    July 26, 2011 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  5. Sooz

    So Cantor if the debt limit sucks why do you want another discussion in 9 months? and Why has the debit ceiling been raised over and over for all Presidents. Do you think it has anything to do with Mitch McConnell saying NOTHING can be done as long as Obama is President! The GOP has proven over and over that they are there to fight and have NO INTENTION of taking or working on a compromise for the good of the people. TELL EVERYONE YOU KNOW. DON'T VOTE FOR A REPUBLICAN NEXT ELECTION OR ANY OTHER ELECTION. They were sent there by the people to work for us and not against us. Tax the richest and cut the budget. and remember to kick all GOP OUT. OUT. OUT.......

    July 26, 2011 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  6. Julie

    Really,, Mr. Cantor, really. It sucks so much that you want to do it again in six months? You all are not to be believed! About anything!

    July 26, 2011 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  7. Lisa P

    "But Cantor praised Boehner in the meeting, the sources said, saying he did an amazing job and that conference is behind him 150 percent."

    The Republican leadership continues to have problems with math.

    July 26, 2011 01:19 pm at 1:19 pm |
  8. The Day of Financial Reckoning is HERE - The Great Democrat Welfare Society Ends

    Stand firm and save this country from the Democrats that want to bankrupt it.

    July 26, 2011 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  9. Ferret out the B.S.

    Last night I heard more crap come out of Boehners mouth than should be allowed. He claimed to be a small business owner and therefore had experience in these matters. My question is, what small business has ever survived by just cutting spending? You have to have revenues to survive, be sustainable, and grow. Your plan is not sustainable and is not a solution and only serves to push it further down the road. You are not negotiating in good faith, you are the problem!

    July 26, 2011 01:20 pm at 1:20 pm |
  10. The Real Tom Paine

    Interesting that they are now concerned about a so-called "blank check" for Obama, when their bretheren in the Senate were prpared to hand the authority to raise the debt ceiling over to Obama: they are truly incapable of governing, and there will be hell to pay for them next November. The next question is, what will they do when it fails in the Senate and they have nothing?

    Moths, prepare to meet the furnace, otherwise known as public opinion.

    July 26, 2011 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  11. Cincinnatian

    John Boehner and Eric Cantor suck at understanding and representing the silent majority of Americans who want compromise and cooperation. Obama is not asking for a blank check – he is asking Congress to do their jobs. As I recall, Republicans had no problem issuing blank checks to Bush.

    July 26, 2011 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  12. Bill

    Again, Cantor shows he is nothing more than an immature, sniveling little whelp. Got news for you Eric, the American people want this done and done for the long term. There will be no revisting anything in six months.

    July 26, 2011 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  13. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Jim Runyan should have worn a helmet when he played football, as he is talking like a person with severe brain damage. At least the republicans are laughing as they lead us to the edge of ruin.

    July 26, 2011 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  14. DJ in TX

    Cantor just said it "forces the president to debate, entitlements, SSN, in 6 moths. Their answer is not a long term approach. It is a political ploy to have this debate again during the election year. That is bad for all sides. They'll need to campaign to get re-elected, but will they if we are going to have to do this again in six months. This debate will go right down to the wire again, while people are tring to campaing on the debate including them.

    But why don't people ask Boehenr, Cantor, McConnel how many times they have voted to raise the debt ceiling......without tying it to the debt. SEVEN TIMES during the Bush years. SEVEN TIMES with no debate, no deficit reduction plan, no debt plan, NOTHING. They just raised the debt ceiling and kept spending. Ask them how their budget went up each year during the Bush Persidency. Why the change all of a sudden

    The far right likes to quote Reagan, but he raised the debt ceiling SIXTEEN TIMES during his presidency. Teh debt went up 189% during his time. He would not pass the Tea Party qualifications today. BTW – taxes went up 6 fo the 8 years he was Pesident. I'm not saying he was a bad President. I totally disagreed with him, but based on his record, would he ACTUALLY be considered a conservative today???? The debt went up, taxes went up, deficit went up, the debt ceiling went up. Not Tea Party principles.....just a thought. May he rest in peace..........................

    July 26, 2011 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  15. Sank

    Tell them if they're not behind him to go home they're not needed anymore.

    July 26, 2011 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
  16. Jilli

    Yippee!! Go TEAM!!!! Our plan really "sucks"...but it won't effect us, so what the heck do we care – it's the poor working slubs that will pay the price. Party above nation!

    July 26, 2011 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  17. GI Joe

    Every one of the yellow-bellied tea-baggers and republicans in the House have been threated by the tea-bagger backers with being primaried.

    I say we give them a DEMOCRAT OPPONENT and let the people in their districts have a CHOICE. They want to take away our choices, let's take THEIR choices away. THEY ARE POSTURING FOR THEIR RE-ELECTIONS. Every 2 years. They are in constant campaign mode. That's why they spend one week in DC and two weeks at home. FIRE THEM ALL.

    July 26, 2011 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  18. AEK

    Great, more professional dialog from the party that actually created the debt crisis. It appears that many of our Republican contributors recently have forgotten that whole Bush running two wars for eight years "off the books." Obama, in an effort to actually follow the law, placed those wars "on the books."

    July 26, 2011 01:28 pm at 1:28 pm |
  19. Rudy NYC

    "We cannot let a default come to pass that gets blamed on Republicans." Sen. Min. Ldr., Mitch Mcconnell

    Yup, we definitely have a Republican problem in this country. I wonder what Cantor is going to say after we default, get downgraded, interest rates rise, and unemployment follows suit? Don't know? I know. He and Mitch will yodel, "Ya-Hoo-Ooo."

    July 26, 2011 01:30 pm at 1:30 pm |
  20. Angela Savage Austin

    Take Note...History In The Making!!!.

    by Angela Savage Austin on Monday, July 25, 2011 at 11:07pm

    Dear President Obama:

    My Civil Right is to demand that the Republicans and Democrats "REACH BEYOND THEIR LIMITS" their all is not enough, when all they give the American People and our children is their limit. President Obama reach beyond their limit...take our votes...let the people vote on raising the debt ceiling. Maybe the first time in history to do so...remove the middle man and let the people vote. Can it be done, President Obama?


    Angela Savage Austin

    July 26, 2011 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  21. ConservaFASCISTS/Dutch, Bad Newz, VA

    YOU SUCK CANTOR!!! I'm going to keep calling Congress and tying up the lines until you morons get the point. Where are the jobs??????

    July 26, 2011 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  22. John

    John Boehner and Eric Cantor Is like watching that movie dumb and dumber. They just don't get It the American People want you Republican to COMPROMISE. Now do you UNDERSTAND THIS, Or you need me to write shower.

    July 26, 2011 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  23. 'merica ruined by rethugs

    There's no bluff, weasel. Compromise. Balanced approach. Revenues and cuts. Stop trying to kill grandma and the middle class, you little twerp. The vote isn't the only thing that sucks....

    July 26, 2011 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  24. Rudy NYC

    This is what the American people voted for when they gave House Majority to the Republicans. "No Compromise."

    July 26, 2011 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
  25. American

    ANYONE in Congress on the day the debt limit fails and the USofA Defaults WILL BE OUT OF OFFICE ASAP.
    No one in the voting public will ever re-elect these people – if we default – they ALL FAIL. Period. So get on with it boys.
    Tuck your stuff between your legs and get on with it. We don't care who's liberal or conservative – we care not to default!!!

    July 26, 2011 01:34 pm at 1:34 pm |
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