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. Billy

    Cantor got it wrong, it's the GOP that sucks.

    July 26, 2011 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  2. AJP

    Let's tell like it is, the Republican's suck!!!!!

    July 26, 2011 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  3. BEn275

    Cantor is a sad little man.

    July 26, 2011 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  4. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    As I look at republican accomplishments, I realized that other than ENRON, unfunded wars, unfunded drug programs, unfunded tax cuts for the wealthy, lying to get us into war, Watergate, non stop wars against: seniors, the middle class, public workers, police and firemen, teachers, the environment, safety regulations, the constitution, veterans, social security and medicare, poor people, blacks, muslims, hispanics, and women, the republicans have done little to make America great.

    July 26, 2011 01:35 pm at 1:35 pm |
  5. Linda

    Showing they care more about ideology that the good of the country and we will not forget come election time. FED UP. They want to cut something cut their lifetime salary and benefits.

    July 26, 2011 01:37 pm at 1:37 pm |
  6. mgc florida

    Boehner and Cantor and the tea party idiots have hijacked the republican party, ronald regan is spinning in his grave. i will no longer be a registered republican, I am turning independant, I don't want to belong to a party that has become this extreme!!

    July 26, 2011 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  7. us1776

    Hey GOP, how's that teabagger birther thing working out for you guys.

    And those teabagger death panels? And kill grandmas?

    And this teabagger hold the GOP hostage to teabagger extortion demands?

    Yeah, how's all that teabagger stuff goin' for ya?


    July 26, 2011 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  8. Jason

    Making the average citizen uncomfortable, so the GOP can poison the election cycle, won't wash now, or ever. People want the ability to live, not have DC game playing.

    July 26, 2011 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  9. Ben in LA

    I have never met any politicians who hate America as much as this current batch of Republicans.

    July 26, 2011 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  10. Jack Be Humble

    Option #4 would be to reconcile the Reid and Boener plan, so that everyone would agree and pass it along to the President's eager signature.

    July 26, 2011 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  11. Herbie Walker

    "The people in this room..."

    Sure sounds like a cult to me!

    July 26, 2011 01:41 pm at 1:41 pm |
  12. KC

    That's not the only thing that sucks.

    July 26, 2011 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  13. Ninja

    Wow, children acting like children. There's another option that's not crazy like the three that Cantor discussed: a clean debt increase, like has been done 102 times since 1915.

    July 26, 2011 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  14. Heidi Tysma

    The Republican party is not what it use to be, it is full of a lot of self centered brats

    July 26, 2011 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  15. Cati

    wonderful, Cantor can't count. One can't be behind something 150%. Who let him into Congress?

    July 26, 2011 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  16. gaucho402

    So they're going to press for a plan that both the Senate won't pass and the President will veto? They're playing chicken with our economy???

    IS THIS A JOKE? Has the GOP become a laughing stock of politics? Do they not look at the polls anymore unless its a TEa Party supported view?


    July 26, 2011 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  17. Tom

    They all need to consider their REELECTION chances if they cannot agree on doing something for the good of the country. If the US defaults and the markets crash, our pensions/401k's etc will crash with them. That is not a good environment for some congressman to come to me asking for my vote.

    July 26, 2011 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  18. bugdad

    Well, Mr Cantor-Corporate-Coal-Puppet,
    You boys backed yourselves into a corner and you are so intent on winning the next election that you will let this country go down in a ball of financial flames. Nice goin' Mr Tough-Stuff. You are THE problem in America today. And kepping the line for the benefit of special interests will slowly eat your party away like battery acid on bedsheet. Si-o-nara to you, Cantor.

    July 26, 2011 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  19. Lab Monkey

    This debt limit fight is NOT the only thing that sucks – you GOP pretty-boys.
    This is what happens when you allow our elected officials to 'pledge' themselves to outside groups, lobbyists, and special interests....INSTEAD of the oath of office they took to SERVE THE ELECTORATE that got them in their chair.


    July 26, 2011 01:44 pm at 1:44 pm |
  20. Steve Lyons

    without real cuts, right now and going forward there is ZERO justification for raising the debt limit. Just because we are currently overspending is NO reason to keep overspending. Cap the limit where it is today, and CUT spending to match. Raising taxes in any form is simply treason.

    July 26, 2011 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  21. Randy

    Let's take a look at the big picture of the debt. You can sum it up in a couple of statements.
    1. If you don't spend as much you don't need as much revenue.
    2. If you increase revenue, it will be very likely that you will increase spending.
    Think of it as a pay raise. Using simple words number for the dems, If you get a 10% pay raise, do you take the entire increase and pay down debt, save it for later, or do you end up buying an extra starbucks or two during the week. It may be a little of both but let me continue

    Once you have enough for your retirement, and you have paid of your debt, do you go to your employer and say, you no what, don't pay me as much I just don't need it anymore. Or does that one or two starbucks now turn into 3 or 4 because you have the money, and you NEED that tasty coffee. Along with a whole bunch of other things, that you feel you NEED.

    July 26, 2011 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  22. Marcia

    so sad that Obama can't continue his reckless spending!

    July 26, 2011 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  23. Embarrased Conservative

    This article is an example of why I am an embarrased conservative. Eric Cantor should be removed from every single discussion regarding the debt ceiling. He is currently betting against American and has financial incentive to see to it that the debt ceiling is not raised.

    July 26, 2011 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  24. Hardik

    House rep are playing a very dirty game with the americans. This is not about politics anymore, this is about the american people. Due to all this drama, we the american people are struggling and will struggle. No doubt about that. They need to act on this quickly.

    July 26, 2011 01:45 pm at 1:45 pm |
  25. JimmySD

    Cantor states Boehner "he did an amazing job"!?!?!?

    Talk about out of touch with reality!

    July 26, 2011 01:46 pm at 1:46 pm |
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