Cantor walks out on budget talks

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite, File)

Efforts to find a bipartisan agreement blending huge budget cuts with a must-pass measure to increase how much the government can borrow have entered a new phase after Republican negotiators pulled out of talks led by Vice President Joe Biden.

The exit of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor from the talks on Thursday means the most difficult decisions have been kicked upstairs to GOP House Speaker John Boehner of Ohio and President Barack Obama. The Biden-led group had made solid progress in weeks of negotiations but was at an impasse over taxes.

Cantor, R-Va., said that the Republican-dominated House simply won’t support tax increases and that it’s time for Obama to weigh in directly because Biden and Democrats were insisting on tax increases. Democrats said it’s only fair to blend in additional revenues from closing tax breaks to balance trillions of dollars in spending cuts.

It had long been assumed that the Biden group would set the stage for more decisive talks involving Obama and Boehner. As a result, Cantor’s move was interpreted as trying to jump-start the talks rather than blow them up — a view shared by Cantor himself.

“The purpose here is to alter the dynamic,” Cantor said.

In fact, Cantor’s withdrawal came after Boehner had already made a trek to the White House — in a secret meeting Wednesday night that followed up on a golf outing over the weekend. For his part, Cantor didn’t inform Boehner of his decision to leave the talks until Thursday, shortly before the news broke, said a GOP official familiar with the situation. The official required anonymity because of the sensitivity of the information.

The White House sought to put a positive spin on developments.

“As all of us at the table said at the outset, the goal of these talks was to report our findings back to our respective leaders,” Biden said in a statement. “The next phase is in the hands of those leaders, who need to determine the scope of an agreement that can tackle the problem and attract bipartisan support. For now the talks are in abeyance as we await that guidance.”

The Senate’s Republican negotiator, Jon Kyl of Arizona, also exited the talks.

For his part, Cantor said the secretive Biden-led talks had “established a blueprint” for agreement on significant cuts in spending.

One of the byproducts of Cantor’s departure was to provide an opportunity for partisans on all sides to make statements at odds with the positions they may have to take to achieve a deal. Democrats insist that at least some new revenues are needed — both to soften spending cuts and to line up the Democratic votes needed to pass the measure.

“It will take Democratic votes to pass any debt-ceiling agreement,” said Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y. “As a result, certain things are going to have to be true. We cannot make cuts to Medicare benefits. We have to allow for revenues like wasteful subsidies for ethanol and oil companies. And we have to do something on jobs.”

“President Obama needs to decide between his goal of higher taxes or a bipartisan plan to address our deficit,” said Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky. “He can’t have both.”

As for Democratic demands for new deficit-financed “jobs” initiatives, McConnell scoffed: “What planet are they on?”

Cantor said that plenty of progress has been made in identifying trillions of dollars in potential spending cuts to accompany legislation to raise the $14.3 trillion cap on the government’s ability to borrow money. Passage of the legislation this summer is necessary to meet the government’s obligations to holders of U.S. Treasurys. The alternative is a market-shaking, first-ever default on U.S. obligations.

Copyright © 2011 The Associated Press

14 Responses to "Cantor walks out on budget talks"

  1. Carl Nemo  June 24, 2011 at 7:12 am

    Massive budget cuts + Tax increases = Solution to deadlock

    Defining the the equation components:

    Budget cuts not only in the present, but the funding of recently passed boondoggles such as Obamacare et al., military outlays on useless ‘killtoys’, chronic involvement in MIC/crimpol engineered wars, foreign aid to our enemies and questionable allies, ‘pork’ (earmarks) etc. along with a relentless mission to cut waste and fraud in government.

    http://hoguenews.com/?p=4834

    Tax increases on the top 1% to make up for for their ten year free ride and close to 500 billion windfall they’ve received courtesy of the Bushistas in the early part of the first decade of this century and the scam goes on. They talk about it, but absolutely refuse to do what’s necessary to shakedown these wealthy ‘freeriders’ who enjoy the security of doing business in a “safe nation” provided by our superb military and nuclear umbrella.

    Many of the business shenanigans the wealthy pull off on our shores wouldn’t fly elsewhere. Screw up in “Red China” even if you are wealthy and you’ll get a bullet to the base of the brain or a short trip to the visiting execution van.

    The solution is easy, but the lack of will and continual partisan infighting will insure America’s demise. Believe it…! : |

    Carl Nemo **==

  2. Danny Adams  June 24, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    Maybe the Michigan state Democrats can suggest places in Illinois where Cantor & Co. can stay while they’re walked-out.

  3. CA Leeson  June 24, 2011 at 4:21 pm

    Erik Cantor is just another corporate loving extremist Republican (aka Republicorps). And the Dumocrats are just as bad in a big government way.

  4. Keith  June 24, 2011 at 7:25 pm

    Carl Nemo wrote:

    “Tax increases on the top 1% to make up for for their ten year free ride and close to 500 billion windfall they’ve received courtesy of the Bushistas in the early part of the first decade of this century and the scam goes on.”

    The truth is that jacking up the taxes on the top 1% of incomes in the United States won’t even put a small dent in the deficit, Carl. There simply aren’t enough of them.

    Unfortunately, the REAL problem is that the fiscal and monetary policies of our idiots in Congress and the White House have now completely destroyed the middle class in the United States of America. These are the people who, over the years, have traditionally “pulled the wagon” of our country with their taxes.

    The end result is that now, the small handful of people at the top of the income ladder continue to get filthy rich, while the middle class continues to sink ever deeper into poverty. And once hyperinflation takes hold (as a result of our gormless government clowns continuing to print ever larger amounts of worthless money) we are now destined to become a nation that largely exists on welfare.

    For example, some 44 million people in the USA (about 17%…an all time high) are ALREADY on food stamps and that number is expected to climb sharply in the next decade. Indeed, what’s REALLY scary is that the number of people on food stamps has gone up by over 10 MILLION \just in the last two years!

    The bottom line here is that the so-called “middle class” in the USA has now all but been destroyed by the monetary and fiscal policies of our gormless government bureaucrats and elected officials.

    And, with joblessness now hovering around 10 percent (some would say the REAL embedded unemployment rate is now closer to 20 percent), I don’t hold out much hope that the vast middle class in our nation…the folks who have traditionally paid the bills of government…. will see a rebirth anytime soon.

    • Almandine  June 24, 2011 at 10:04 pm

      You got it Keith… the folks get screwed, while the pols get rich.

      But, of course, there will be no riots in the streets, because that dwindling middle class will be targeted again and again for evermore worthless dollars, keeping the destitute class fed just enough to get by. The rhetoric will continue to paint those who work successfully as the greedy bastards who are to blame.

      Just as unfortunately, the real crooks – those behind the curtain – will amass more and more all the while. Only when the average working stiff gets aggressively fed up will it all change. But then, those days are being prepared for by the governing elite.

      Too bad people are so mesmerized by entertainment and tomfoolery.

    • Pondering_It_All  June 26, 2011 at 12:30 am

      It seems like increasing the taxes on the top 1% of incomes would not make much difference, but that is where 25% of the yearly income goes and 40% of the total wealth resides. If we added a single additional 70% tax bracket for incomes over $250,000 it would double their taxes yielding about 0.25 * 0.35 = 8.75% more revenue. That works out to about 70% of the 2010 deficit, so it makes way more than “a dent”.

      • Carl Nemo  June 26, 2011 at 12:45 am

        Thanks Pondering_It_All for your reckoning of the value of doing something, at least anything to curtail our national debt hemorraghing. I was impressed with your math along with the benefits thereof. : )

        It all adds up…no? : |

        Carl Nemo **==

      • Almandine  June 26, 2011 at 2:55 pm

        Too bad we’re not in the 2010 budget year any longer. The current budget numbers show about $2.2T in revenue with about a $1.6T deficit. Using your numbers, 8.75% is about $200B more revenue, which translates to about 12.5% of the deficit. Maybe still not a mere “dent” but not a way out either.

  5. Carl Nemo  June 24, 2011 at 10:01 pm

    Thanks Keith for the feedback. Granted a half trillion won’t make an immediate dent in the deficit problem, but its a start along with many other pathways. Any single one will not do.

    Here’s a link to an associated current article on this site titled: ‘Let’s make a deal’ Obama in which I lay out the massive damage they’ve done to this nation along with my suggested remediation within this article. It can be done, the question is: does our leadership have the cajones or a plan to save this nation. I think not! In fact it’s so in our face that it’s part of a plan to reduce this nation to that of a desperate world debtor; ie., slaves to international bankers. Seemingly they’ve almost succeeded.

    http://www.capitolhillblue.com/node/41264

    We just can’t roll over and die like slugs in the noonday sun because they’ve arranged it so. As for myself, I’ve yet begun to fight…! : |

    When they start talking of selling off the states to the Chinese then its time for a purge…no? / : |

    Carl Nemo **==

    • Almandine  June 26, 2011 at 2:56 pm

      Fight Carl ??? How so?

  6. Carl Nemo  June 26, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    If push comes to shove, how about some “fire in the belly”, a set of cajones, a cunning strategic and tactical brain, Ak’s, RPG’s, vodka bottles, gasoline and rags or whatever else is necessary to overthrow blood-sucking, bureaucratic despots. I’m not advocating immediate revolution, but this is what it will take unless our leadership doesn’t change its course and start thinking in terms of “America First”. It sounds almost quaint doesn’t it?

    Things will eventually get so bad civilly speaking that leaders at the state level need to stand up to the Feds and start shutting their mutual involvement down before an outright revolution does start. The Feds control the states by threatening to withold funding etc. The States need to give them a collective “Bronx cheer” and tell’em to keep ‘their’ money which is actually our money to begin with.

    The crimpols in D.C. have lost their grip on reality as to who should be controlling this nation and it’s not them, but “We the People” via a responsive, obedient Congress. We don’t need no more stinkin’ ‘leaders’…period! The people need to lead through responsive “representatives”, not policy makers and they need to follow orders instead of continually punching our collective t.s. cards while pitching our money away on questionable social programs and zero sum, adventuristic, engineered wars in far off regions; in addition to shoring up crooked businessmen and bankers with their privatize the gains and socialize the losses government policies.

    The feds aren’t going to help the states with their financial problems although they’ve surely used taxpayer money for big banking and AIG bailouts so they could prop up “foreign banks” with our money. So the states know where they stand relatively speaking to this bunch of blood-sucking, internationalist parasites in D.C.

    One thing state governors should consider is shutting down Federal income tax deductions from all checks paid by businesses in their respective states via executive order in addition to any other fees and levies that are surrendered to Caesar on a passive, no questions asked basis to date. The money can be held in trust until the Federal government gets jerked up by the ‘shorthairs’ to the extent they start paying attention to “We the People” rather than their globalist banking cronies. Without money they can’t do diddly squat, not even pay troops to kill us off.

    Regardless of the outcome, I do see the ultimate Balkanization of America in time, surely by mid century. Too much power is wielded by the Boston~New York~D.C.~Eurozone axis of evil. Regardless of what I write they are going down and down hard due to their criminally disposed profligacy with our tax dollars.

    Carl Nemo **==

    • Almandine  June 26, 2011 at 6:23 pm

      Feds not helping states? Try this:

      http://dailycaller.com/2011/06/22/how-the-stimulus-robbed-states-of-their-sovereignty/

      • Carl Nemo  June 26, 2011 at 8:25 pm

        Thanks for the link Almandine which demonstrates exactly how the Fed controls the states and has been for many years. So many state programs depend on Federal aid to float, without such they’re finished.

        This still does not help the state deficit issues, with all except about four being solvent and the rest being buried in unpayable debt regardless of this ‘stimulus aid’ pork.

        Obama’s stimulus plan and the monies thereof were nothing but a boondoggle the same as TARP in the last days of the Bushista eight year reign of terrors/errors.

        Seemingly most state governments will roll over like puppies waiting for their tummies scratched in order to get more Fed ‘bones’, but there’s no way this will address their monumental shortfalls when it comes to state bond fund commitments, impending pension plan busts etc.

        These spendthrifts at all levels of government have sown the wind and soon they along with the people shall reap the mighty whirlwind of societal destruction.

        Carl Nemo **==

  7. Carl Nemo  June 26, 2011 at 10:13 pm

    Re: second paragraph

    “…with all except about four being solvent” …extract from post

    should read:

    “…with all except about four being insolvent” …

    My apologies

    Carl Nemo **==

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