President Barack Obama’s opening bid in negotiations over the so-called fiscal cliff was neither balanced nor especially concerned about reducing the deficit despite the president’s claim to favor a “balanced approach” to solving the country’s fiscal crisis, Republicans said.
GOP leaders roundly rejected the offer, which reportedly included $1.6 trillion in tax increases, $50 billion in new stimulus spending, and a major mortgage refinancing proposal (cost unspecified). The proposal would also eliminate the statutory requirement that Congress approve increases in the federal government’s borrowing authority.
The White House did not offer any concrete commitments on spending cuts or entitlement reform.
House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) offered a pessimistic take on Friday and told reporters the president’s offer “wasn’t a serious one.”
“There’s a stalemate,” he said. “Let’s not kid ourselves. Right now we’re almost nowhere.”
Following his meeting with Geithner on Thursday, Boehner warned: “There is a real danger of going off the fiscal cliff.”
“Appalling,” one GOP aide said of the White House offer. “If I were Boehner, I’d be pretty pissed off. It’s definitely a wake up call.”
excerpt from Free Beacon