Republicans: Obama wants to go over the cliff
December 23rd, 2012
11:37 AM ET
10 years ago

Republicans: Obama wants to go over the cliff

(CNN) – Republican lawmakers said Sunday they believe President Barack Obama wants the country to fall off the fiscal cliff for political purposes.

“I think he sees a political victory at the bottom of the cliff. He gets all this additional tax revenue for new programs. He gets to cut the military, which Democrats have been calling for for years and he gets to blame Republicans for it,” Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming said on “Fox News Sunday.”

His sentiment was shared by Rep. Mick Mulvaney of South Carolina.

“I believed from the very beginning and continue to believe that the president has no interest at all in not going over the cliff,” Mulvaney told CNN chief political correspondent Candy Crowley on “State of the Union.” “He wants to go over the cliff. Everything I've looked at and seen out of the White House.”

It’s a point Sen. Kent Conrad, D-North Dakota, took issue with on Fox.

“This conversation to me is exactly what’s wrong in Washington,” Conrad countered. “It’s he said, she said, blame the other guy.”

But it’s this type of partisan back and fourth which has fiscal cliff negotiations stalled and has put the country on the precipice of a potential economic crisis.

Still, Barrasso said there’s time yet for a breakthrough when both Congress and the president return to Washington after the Christmas holiday.

“I don’t want us to go over the cliff, I want to find a solution,” Barrasso said. “I think there’s still time. We’re coming back here on the 27th.”

December 27th that is - leaving lawmakers just five days for negotiations before the country falls off the fiscal cliff.

Watch State of the Union with Candy Crowley Sundays at 9am ET. For the latest from State of the Union click here.

soundoff (117 Responses)
  1. josh

    If these parties can't come together in the next few years we will have a problem. Everyone likes to point at republican but they are there because they were voted into congress. The president did not win by a landslide victory by any standards. We are becoming more polarized and in reality neither party is going to dominate this fight. If we as a nation are really this different from one another and cannot find any common ground perhaps we should let some states secede from the union. The reality is what some states are in far better financial condition then others. California is the worlds 9th largest economy yet is in perpetually broke. This idea scares me but it seems we are going further apart not coming together.

    December 23, 2012 08:57 pm at 8:57 pm |
  2. John

    I am still baffled by our surprise that a party, who ran on a platform of anti-government, fails to pass major legislation that would help to fund the government, while knowing by doing nothing, it will essentially shutdown effective government.

    It is ironic that the talking heads all failed to mention that, if we do jump off "the cliff", it's not just the military will be cut, ALL programs will be drastically cut. The blame game can go either way, though I would put it more squarely on the party whose platform is one that is anti-federal government.

    December 23, 2012 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  3. TEW

    IOne can only hope that people will learn the lessons of 2010 . Folks need to come out and vote in force during the 2014 mid-term election to kick the GOP terrorist out. This is the only way this non-sense will stop. GOP has got to go until they purge themselves of the Tea Party obstructionist.

    December 23, 2012 09:30 pm at 9:30 pm |
  4. Dann

    So if Obama wants us to go over the cliff and the Republicans are always doing everything they can to prevent Obama from getting what he wants does that mean they'll sign off on tax increases for people making more than $1m per year?

    December 23, 2012 09:36 pm at 9:36 pm |
  5. They ought to change from the elephant to the hippo...

    Nice try you do nothing Republicans. YOU agreed to the cliff and had plenty of time to deal. Instead you squandered the time. Now that the clock is running out and your man didn't win and save you, you have to deal with the consequences. Put on your big boy pants, for a change and come up with a reasonable proposal. You know what acceptable guidelines are...

    December 23, 2012 10:00 pm at 10:00 pm |
  6. MikeyZ

    Republicans seem too quick to forget that they signed on to the fiscal-cliff deal last year.

    December 23, 2012 10:12 pm at 10:12 pm |
  7. donna

    Why do we even have the Republican party? It's time for something new. All their tactics are being exposed on the internet, and as communication improves, everyone is becoming Democrats. Republicans are a bunch of has-beens.

    December 23, 2012 10:32 pm at 10:32 pm |
  8. Are you kidding me?

    I am a republican and I want this impasse to end with some tax increases on the wealthiest of Americans. If we make a whole series of cut without revenue increases it will not make a dent in lowering our debt.

    If there is no deal I will not blame the president. I will blame the immaturity of republicans and their unwillingness to handle the real issues they were elected to handle.

    December 23, 2012 10:46 pm at 10:46 pm |
  9. Saboth

    #1. We wouldn't even have a cliff if not for Republican obstructionism. #2. The "plans" they've been introducing are the exact same ones Obama rejected the LAST time they had talks. Of course Obama's going to reject them again. Americans gave him more seats in House, Senate and he kept the Presidency, meaning a majority of Americans reject Republican ideals and plans (if they had any to start with). Does Obama want to go ove the cliff? Sure. That allows him to introduce tax cuts for people that haven't seen their wealth grow 300%, while getting the tax revenues those people should be paying (instead of Mr. 13% Romney and his ilk). It's really up to the Republicans to prevent the cliff. Come up with some real numbers on the tax increases for the wealthiest Americans, and come up with whatever cuts they want to make. They can't even get their own party to vote on the plans REPUBLICANS introduced (just see how Boehner's plan just failed to pass in the House). How do they expect anything Obama proposes to be passed? Nothing he suggests would appease these people.

    December 23, 2012 11:21 pm at 11:21 pm |
  10. 22

    Let's go over the cliff!The top 2% will see their taxes go up just like the rest of us,all this wrangling isj just a futile effort by the loser Gopers to save face-they don't want to be seen as raising taxes but if we tumble over the cliff,they think they won't get blamed,boy are they in fr a surprise!To think we sent these losers to Washington.......

    December 23, 2012 11:28 pm at 11:28 pm |
  11. luke,az

    Republicans are a party of the past. They just don't get it .

    December 23, 2012 11:34 pm at 11:34 pm |
  12. Michael

    Look GOP: Obama did everything to meet you jerks halfway. You and your demented Party and the Speker REFUSED to fix the PROBLEM YOU CREATED! So, please get your facts right ok! There is NO turning back on what YOU CREATED and now on what you are SHOVING America over!


    December 24, 2012 12:30 am at 12:30 am |
  13. BeverlyNC

    The GOP created the "fiscal cliff". They agreed to the ending of the Bush tax cuts for the rich and a huge cut to the Defense budget (which the Generals agree should be cut) as an incentive to get a budget passed. They refused to pass any budget President Obama put forth so this became their "punishment" for not getting a sensible fair budget passed before the end of the year. Republicans ignored it completely until recently. President Obama tried to help them by offering a halfway proposal of both sides giving something. Republicans rejected it completely. Boehner came up with a ridiculous plan his own Party rejected. If we go over the cliff, it is completely the fault of the Republicans. They will prove yet again they care nothing about the middle class or working people. They show no understanding of how real Americans live, what we face, nor do they care as long as their vote buying rich friends and corporations are protected from paying their fair share of taxes or following the regulations that protect the People from industry greed.
    Come 2014, it is time to remove all Republicans from the House and put in real leaders who know their oath to serve the PEOPLE is a real and serious one. Real work will finally get done and the People will benefit after a long time of Republican obstruction of everything meant to restore America.

    December 24, 2012 12:58 am at 12:58 am |
  14. J.V.Hodgson

    All this conspiracy theory pontificating by Republicans of Obama intended to take us over the fiscal cliff. Such worda and your air time to them CNN are a disgrace to reality and truth, because:-
    It ignores the facts that whatever Boehner as leader of the House Republican caucus did cannot pass a single comprehensive bill to match the Budget act which they helped create and voted FOR without a filibuster.
    Insted they
    a) attempt to repeal the budget act defense cuts and replace with minor tax revenue and spending elsewher cuts total $494bn only half the budget act spending cuts.
    b) Reject a plan they said was essential throughout the presidential campaign = reduce the deficit/ debt. thier plan does neither Obamas does.
    When will they do the job we elected them to do which is fix the problem with compromise not stupid constant re-iteration of an ideology that lost them and election.
    Keep up this attempted and failed blame game= Obama fault mission in the election on the economy and now on who is taking us over the fiscal cliff have we all noticed that the people dont count to republicans only thier ideology and big businees even when it dont fix the problem.

    December 24, 2012 01:06 am at 1:06 am |
  15. steve

    Republicans are pathetic. They hide at FOX and let Limbaugh dictate policy to them. Republicans can blame Obama all they want, but the majority of Americans are not buying it.

    December 24, 2012 01:31 am at 1:31 am |
  16. ThinkAgain: What is it about "well regulated militia" that you don't get?!?

    @J. Snedeker: "imam obama's plan all along has been to bring America to it's knees. He's his father's offspring."

    Really? Is that why President Obama's policies save our country from going into a Great Depression and we've had more than 33 straight months of private sector job growth? Why the Dow is over 13,000? Why we're out of Iraq and getting out of Afghanistan? Why he gave the kill order for bin Laden and countless al Qaeda leadership?

    Believing that the President is trying to harm our country is nuts ... ergo and therefore, you must be a Republican! 🙂

    December 24, 2012 02:13 am at 2:13 am |
  17. ThinkAgain: All the GOP's policies are proven failures.

    @marcindc: "Those electorates and states who voted for the same policies and reelected the community organizer should be the ones who suffer the most in terms of lost jobs, lost contracts, reduced benefits and opportunities for them and their children."

    You are laughable! If it weren't for "blue" states, all you red-staters would be sunk! You taked more federal dollars than you contribute, and compared to "blue" states,have lower average incomes, lower high school graduation rates, lower literacy rates, and higher out-of-wedlock and teen births.

    December 24, 2012 02:38 am at 2:38 am |
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