White House Puts Ball in GOP Court

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Carney statement pushing Reid plan on House argues “cuts put forward in this approach were previously agreed to by both parties.”

Statement by the Press Secretary

The President has been advocating a balanced plan that would reduce our deficit by $4 trillion by making large cuts in domestic and Pentagon spending, reforming entitlement programs, and closing tax loopholes for corporations, millionaires and billionaires. This sort of approach won support from Democrats and Republicans in the Senate, but the House Republicans walked away after insisting that the budget be balanced on the backs of seniors and the middle class.

Now, faced with the “my way or the highway,” short-term approach of the House Republicans, Senator Reid has put forward a responsible compromise that cuts spending in a way that protects critical investments and does not harm the economic recovery. All the cuts put forward in this approach were previously agreed to by both parties through the process led by the Vice President. Senator Reid’s plan also reduces the deficit more than enough to meet the contrived dollar-for-dollar criteria called for by House Republicans, and, most importantly, it removes the cloud of a possible default from our economy through 2012. The plan would make a meaningful down payment in addressing our fiscal challenge, and we could continue to work together to build on it with a balanced approach to deficit reduction that includes additional spending reforms and closing tax loopholes for corporations, millionaires and billionaires.

Senator Reid’s plan is a reasonable approach that should receive the support of both parties, and we hope the House Republicans will agree to this plan so that America can avoid defaulting on our obligations for the first time in our history. The ball is in their court.

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I wonder how many votes Reid's plan would get if it got a straight up-or-down vote in the House. It doesn't have any new taxes, a Republican non-negotiable. It seems a certainty that whatever passes in the end will have some spending cuts that hawkish budgeteers find gimmicky. Probably two mute points, however, since both sides have dug in so far on their competing plans that a third way is going to be required in all likelihood.
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