December 27th, 2012
05:31 PM ET
9 years ago

Hoyer compares GOP debt limit tactics to hostage taker threatening to shoot child

Washington (CNN) - Less than two weeks after one of the nation's deadliest school shootings, the No.2 Democrat in the U.S. House, Steny Hoyer, compared Republican tactics for dealing with the nation's debt limit to someone threatening to shoot a child hostage.

"It's somewhat like taking your child hostage and saying to somebody else, 'I'm going to shoot my child if you don't do what I want done.' You don't want to shoot your child. There's no Republican leader that wants to default on our debt, that I've talked to," Hoyer said at a Capitol Hill press conference.

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Hoyer's comments came in response to a question about the Treasury Department's notice that the nation was approaching its debt limit. He criticized Republicans for previous resistance to raising the debt ceiling and used the gun analogy to argue that the issue should not be part of the negotiations involving the fiscal cliff.

In a session on the House floor lasting less than 10 minutes – and at which just a handful of members were present - Hoyer called on GOP leaders to bring the House back into session to craft a compromise to avert the fiscal cliff.

Shortly after Hoyer spoke to reporters, House Republican leaders held a conference call with their members and told them the House would reconvene on Sunday night - just a day before the year-end deadline.

Filed under: Fiscal Cliff • Steny Hoyer
soundoff (229 Responses)
  1. HenryMiller

    We wouldn't have a debt problem if people like Steny Hoyer would quit voting to spend money we don't have.

    December 27, 2012 11:27 pm at 11:27 pm |
  2. JohnnyBBadd

    The American public needs to "Rise-Above" and revolt and get the idiots in Washington removed from public office.

    December 27, 2012 11:27 pm at 11:27 pm |
  3. HenryMiller

    "Hoyer said, "There's no Republican leader that wants to default on our debt""

    "President Obama used to believe the exact same thing....until the Republicans refused to raise the debt limit and we defaulted on our debt...LAST YEAR!"

    "At this point one would have to be a fool not to believe that Republicans are willing to sacrifice this nation in order to reattain power."

    Just off hand, I'd say it was the people who keep spending us deeper into bakruptcy–mostly Democrats, who are "sacrificing this nation."

    December 27, 2012 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm |
  4. Veritas

    Why is our nation held hostage by a gang of fascists working for 1% of the population?

    December 27, 2012 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm |
  5. Yosemite Sam

    The GOP has been operating using terrorist tactics for years now and they need to be called out on it. The same way a school bully needs to be called out.

    Thank you Steny Hoyer for calling the GOP out for what they have been doing for so very long.

    December 27, 2012 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm |
  6. Mike Anastas

    I can not believe the GOP wants to hurt us. They are good and decent people trying to do what will make the US stronger. We need to pray for them.

    December 27, 2012 11:30 pm at 11:30 pm |
  7. Thomas Jefferson

    Actually, he said something about shooting children. THAT guy gets the most insentive comment award of the year. But he is a Democrat and it will never be reported fact, within a week the media will have headlines saying Boehner said it and is actually going to do it...with an assault rifle to boot,

    December 27, 2012 11:38 pm at 11:38 pm |
  8. WalterDurantyRUNSCNN

    The most amusing and ironic aspect of this is that CNN is reporting this solely from the angle of AGREEING with the heinous statement, not because they recognize it as obscene and obnoxious, but because CNN wishes they can more openly make the same claims.

    I will bet good money that Carol Costello will soon shout at a GOP guest "WHY ARE YOU HOLDING CHILDREN HOSTAGE, GOP??!!".

    December 27, 2012 11:38 pm at 11:38 pm |
  9. NY Repub

    Unfortunately if we go over the fiscal cliff the Republicans will take the fall as they should since they have not worked on a single compromise on the budget. The leaders couldn't even get enough votes for Plan B which was a republican plan. Both parties need to work together and come up with a plan that can get enough republican and democratic votes to pass. Forget about the fringe in both parties and work on a solution both sides can live with. Passing a Republican only plan in the house will do no good.

    December 27, 2012 11:45 pm at 11:45 pm |
  10. Brian

    Wonder if this will cause a run on the banks. Things like this have consequences nobody anticipates.

    December 27, 2012 11:46 pm at 11:46 pm |
  11. Matthew Kilburn

    Obama and the left have shown their colors. They Republicans offered additional revenues, the Democrats turned them down. This isn't about revenue – or Democrats would have accepted the offer to limit deductions. This isn't about cutting debt – Obama wants to spend the extra income on new stimulus.

    The Republicans aren't the ones holding hostage.

    December 27, 2012 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
  12. crimsoninok

    Very Poorly played.. A bad analogy that refers to a tragedy that cost 26 children their lives.. Im not surprised at all that it was a Democrat that said it.. Im really not. Dems today will say anything to get a moment of fame in front of the camera or to give CNN a quote to go with.. Its disgusting, the whole Democratic ideology is disgusting. Im ashamed of you ALL. You are ruining this country and your children and grand children's futures.. But you dont care, because you are getting what you want NOW.. Shame on you all, Shame.

    December 27, 2012 11:56 pm at 11:56 pm |
  13. joe2sixpacks

    They gerrymandered their districts in very fiscally conservative areas to insure a safe re-election. They can then vote in the interest of that narrow district and ignore the greater good of the country. Boehner needs to insure his speakership and has no incentive to push to moderation, and McConnell is afraid of a challenge from the right and has no incentive to compromise and moderate his position. Someone in Washington needs to lead the otrhers to a balanced resolution. The Simpson-Bowles basics would be an appropriate bipartisan starting point. These far right Republican house members need to wake up and do something bigger than themselves for the good of the country.

    December 28, 2012 12:12 am at 12:12 am |
  14. For reals

    Exactly HOW are the democrats not holding 98% of us hostage? Republicans don't want taxes raised on anybody, that includes the middle class. Even when they offered to allow the rates to go up on people making over one million dollars, that wasn't good enough. The democrats are holding us ALL hostage by refusing to confront the REAL problem which is SPENDING.

    December 28, 2012 12:25 am at 12:25 am |
  15. Jim

    Actually, if Stony had a lick of sense he'd see that actually the tactics of the Democrats in Congress and the President are precisely a hostage situation - give me money (in this case about $1 TRILLION) or I'll let the whole financial system come off the rails.

    December 28, 2012 12:28 am at 12:28 am |
  16. BlaisElias

    Shameful. The Democrats have really sunk to a new low.

    December 28, 2012 12:31 am at 12:31 am |
  17. Jim

    A friend and I came up with a few minor ways to encourage resolution of the cliff and the deficit. Until we have a TRULY balanced budget
    1) No paychecks, stipends, or benefits (of any kind) to Congressmen or the President
    2) No Congressmen, staffers, or the President can travel ANYWHERE at taxpayer - no junkets, no "fact finding", no hired cars, no use of military aircraft
    3) Congressional cafeteria, bank, barber shop, etc all closed
    4) All parking at Capitol Hill will be closed
    5) On any given day, only one entrance to Capitol Hill will be opened to reduce the number of security personnel required
    6) The congressional railroad (below Capitol Hill) will be closed

    December 28, 2012 12:33 am at 12:33 am |
  18. She

    Wisdom in sentiment got the ball rolling to compromise for avoidness of collapse in governmental progress.

    December 28, 2012 01:10 am at 1:10 am |
  19. james

    We have all watch the GOP trying to keep their tax policy for past few yrs. the tax cuts passed under bush was in favor of the rich! this tricke down economics has not was ment to be tempary, it was bad policy that ran up deficets and led to the great recession. and we still have this bad tax policy in place... GOP is doing everything they can to keep their tax policy, all the way to the point where they are digging there own graves and going against the majority of the american people

    December 28, 2012 01:22 am at 1:22 am |
  20. LogicBomb

    So if Republicans don't compromise, then they are the bad guys, but when Democrats don't compromise that's ok? Yeah, I don't see anything wrong with that philosophy. On a seaparate note, had Mitch McConnell said what Hoyer said, he'd be crucified by all news networks. I'm looking forward to seeing another self-righteous Democrat get a mulligan on this one.

    December 28, 2012 01:31 am at 1:31 am |
  21. Epidi

    Let your next vote tell them you're mad as hell & not going to take it anymore. When the quest for power becomes more important than the people who put their trust in you to do the right thing – you need to go!

    December 28, 2012 01:34 am at 1:34 am |
  22. Jay

    Jpmichigan, it's not really nice to lie like that.
    Republicans played games and called them budgets. Also, no president's budgets get passed. they are reccommendations that Congress then modifies and debates. Then Congress votes on the result. Please have just a bit of a clue about how things work before getting outraged.

    December 28, 2012 01:58 am at 1:58 am |
  23. Tanya Rappolt

    No one in Washington cares about the American people...PERIOD. They all just want us to pay more for them to play. We have become Washingtons slaves. We work to survive and they are the only people in America (beyond the umber rich) who are gaining. Its not Washingtons children that will be going to bed with empty stomachs. No matter who was voted in this was going to happen. The Congress, The Senate, and the White House are the biggest mobsters in this country.

    December 28, 2012 02:15 am at 2:15 am |
  24. Chuck

    Hoyer sounds like the majority of the CNN commenters

    December 28, 2012 02:18 am at 2:18 am |
  25. Bob

    The banana Republicans are holding the economy hostage, and the ransom they are demanding is tax relief for the richest 1% of Americans. They should be recognized as a terrorist organization and put on the National Security Agency's watch list and rounded up, using the powers granted to the federal government by the Patriot Act they championed. Once they are all safely behind bars we can start taxing the rich again, restore gun control laws and enact even stricter ones, and get universal health care and taxpayer funded education through graduate school like the rest of the free world has. Down with Republicans, down with Republicans, down with Republicans.

    December 28, 2012 02:43 am at 2:43 am |
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