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Speaker Boehner: House Has Passed Bills to Avert Entire Fiscal Cliff; Now President Obama & His Senate Must Take Action
Posted by Brittany Bramell on December 21, 2012

At a press conference today with Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) underscored the need for President Obama and his Democratic-controlled Senate to take action to avert the massive tax hikes and replace the defense sequester scheduled to take effect in just 10 days.  As Speaker Boehner noted, the House has already passed legislation to avert the entire fiscal cliff, and it is now up to the Democrats who run Washington to get serious about the spending cuts and entitlement reforms needed to address our debt and resolve the fiscal cliff. Following are Speaker Boehner’s remarks:


“As you know, the House did not take up the tax bill last night because we didn’t have the votes to pass it.  It’s not the outcome that I wanted, but that was the will of the House.

“So, unless the President and Congress take action, tax rates will go up on every American taxpayer and devastating defense cuts will go into effect in ten days.

“The House has already passed bills addressing the fiscal cliff.  We passed a bill replacing the president’s sequester with responsible spending cuts and did it last May.  We passed a bill to stop all the tax hikes on the American people scheduled to take effect January 1, and we did that on August 1.  And we’ve proposed plans over and over again that Democrats used to support, but now they won’t.

“I don’t want taxes to go up. Republicans don’t want taxes to go up.  But we only run the House, the Democrats continue to run Washington.

“What the president has proposed so far simply won’t do anything to solve our spending problem.  He wants more spending and more tax hikes that will hurt our economy.  And he simply won’t deal honestly with entitlement reform and the big issues that are facing our country. 

“We need significant spending cuts and real tax reform to address our long-term debt problem and pave the way for long-term growth and real growth in jobs in our country.

“We’ll continue to work with our colleagues in the House and the Senate on a plan that protects families and small businesses from the fiscal cliff.”

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#SpendingIsTheProblem: Chasing Higher Spending With Higher Taxes Won’t Solve Our Debt
Posted by Press Office on December 13, 2012

In the debate over avoiding the “fiscal cliff,” an important point has been forgotten: when it comes to solving our debt, government spending is the problem that must be addressed.

Republicans have offered a balanced, pro-growth solution that would avert the fiscal cliff by making needed spending cuts and reforming our tax code in ways the president previously supported. This kind of plan – backed by a majority of the American people in survey after survey – would help address our debt and pave the way for long-term job growth.

President Obama and Democrats, on the other hand, want to punish small businesses with higher tax rates while increasing spending. The president has demanded as much as four times in tax hikes versus spending cuts, which are dwarfed by new ‘stimulus.’ This isn’t balanced. And it won’t do any good.

The chart above – prepared by Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) and the House Budget Committee – shows what happens to projected levels of tax revenue (green) if President Obama’s tax increases kick in (blue), and compares that with recent and projected spending trajectory (red). As you can see, if the president gets his tax hikes, we still face a mountain of spending-driven debt.

Even Democrats like Erskine Bowles admit, “We have to cut spending.” As said on CBS Face the Nation, “Even if you raise the top rates back to the Clinton rates, that only creates about $400 billion over 10 years. That's $40 billion a year. We have a trillion dollar a year deficit.”

Spending is the problem. Republicans want to make needed spending cuts; Democrats are silent. And that’s why there’s still no agreement on averting the fiscal cliff.

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Speaker Boehner Honors 2012 State Champion Moeller High School Football Crusaders
Posted by Press Office on December 13, 2012

House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) today placed a statement in the Congressional Record for the 112th Congress honoring Cincinnati’s Archbishop Moeller High School for winning its eighth Ohio state football championship.  The Moeller Crusaders clinched the state Division I high school football title on December 1, 2012 with a 20-12 win over Toledo Whitmer High School.  The triumph extends a tradition of winning Moeller football that began decades ago under Boehner’s friend, mentor, and coach, Gerry Faust.

Speaker Boehner and all of his brothers grew up in nearby Reading, Ohio and attended Moeller.  The Speaker is a member of the school’s Class of 1968.  Many students from Boehner’s congressional district attend the school today. 

Here is the full text of the statement that Speaker Boehner asked to be inserted into the Congressional Record commemorating Moeller High School’s championship:

“[A]s a proud graduate of Archbishop Moeller High School in Cincinnati, I rise today to congratulate and recognize the Crusaders on their recent Ohio State Football Championship. 

“It is my pleasure to report that on December 1, 2012, the Crusaders won the OHSAA Division I state football championship, defeating Toledo Whitmer High School 20-12.  This is Moeller High School's eighth Ohio football championship in the school’s storied history.

“Under the guidance of Coach John Rodenberg, the 2012 Crusader football team ended its season with a record of 12-3. 

“As a Crusader from the class of 1968, I congratulate Coach Rodenberg, Athletic Director Barry Borman, Principal Blane Collison, President Bill Hunt, and all the faculty, students, and alumni of the Moeller Family on this tremendous achievement. This victory honors the entire school community and extends the winning tradition of Moeller Football that began decades ago under my friend, coach, and mentor, Gerry Faust. 

“Moeller High School has provided a center of learning in the finest Marianist tradition for generations of young men from my congressional district and the Greater Cincinnati area.  A Catholic school, Moeller has established a reputation for excellence in academics, athletics, faith, and community service, a reputation that is renewed and reinforced by this latest achievement. 

“On behalf of the United States House of Representatives, I proudly salute Coach Rodenberg, the 2012 Crusader football team, the Men of Moeller and the entire Moeller Family for this memorable victory.”

 

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November 2012 in Photos
Posted by Press Office on December 07, 2012

November saw a new rush of activity in the Capitol, with Speaker Boehner appearing in the Rayburn Room the day after the election to call for bipartisan action to avert the fiscal cliff. Those efforts continued throughout the month, as Boehner joined GOP leaders for a meeting with the “Fix the Debt” coalition and delivered the Weekly Republican Address.

Boehner also welcomed a group of World War II Honor Flight veterans to the Rotunda; celebrated the 237th birthday of the Marine Corps; honored Dr. James H. Billington for 25 years of service as Librarian of Congress; and accepted a portrait of outgoing Science, Space, Technology Committee chairman Ralph Hall (R-TX) into the House collection.

The full set of photos can be seen below or on Flickr, complete with captions and additional information:

Flickr GalleryClick a thumbnail to begin the slideshow

Speaker John Boehner delivers remarks from the Rayburn Room of the U.S. Capitol on efforts to avert the fiscal cliff and the need for both parties to find common ground and take steps together to help our economy grow and create jobs, which is critical to solving our debt. November 7, 2012.
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Speaker John Boehner delivers remarks from the Rayburn Room of the U.S. Capitol on efforts to avert the fiscal cliff and the need for both parties to find common ground and take steps together to help our economy grow and create jobs, which is critical to solving our debt. November 7, 2012.
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Speaker John Boehner talks with Diane Sawyer of ABC News during an interview in the Speaker's Ceremonial Office at the U.S. Capitol. November 8, 2012.
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President’s Plan “Will Hurt Nearly a Million Small Businesses”
Posted by Press Office on December 05, 2012

Speaker Boehner and House Republican leaders just finished up a meeting with small business owners who will get hit if President Obama raises tax rates instead of cutting spending. A former small business owner, Boehner kicked off the discussion by outlining the consequences of the president’s tax rate hikes, and Republicans’ responsible efforts to protect jobs:

These small business owners that are with us today are here to highlight President Obama’s plan to raise tax rates instead of cutting spending. His plan will hurt nearly a million small businesses around our country, that will affect hundreds of thousands of jobs. Now this week, we made a reasonable offer to the White House that would avert the fiscal cliff… It’s up to the president to engage in this process, talk to us about where he’d like to go next.”

The Hill has previously noted that “Republicans hope to contrast their meeting with small business owners to Obama’s recent talks with CEO’s from large corporations.” Indeed, as Speaker Boehner said on Friday, “Small business owners are regular men and women from all backgrounds, who in today’s economy are facing challenges on a daily basis.” The House Small Business Committee has collected some of those everyday stories, which go into detail about the hurdles the president’s tax rate hikes presents.

Small businesses are protected from tax rate hikes in the reasonable and responsible offer Republicans have made to avert the fiscal cliff, calling instead for cutting spending and fixing our tax code – an approach supported by most Americans, and the president himself in 2011.

 

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Speaker Boehner Says White House Fiscal Cliff Offer is "Nonsense," Calls for Spending Cuts & Tax Reform
Posted by Press Office on December 02, 2012
On Fox News Sunday, Speaker John Boehner said Republicans have offered a balanced approach to averting the fiscal cliff but the president is "not being serious about coming to an agreement." Boehner says the White House is holding tax increases over the heads of the middle class while demanding more spending and tax rate hikes that will hurt small businesses. Here are some of the highlights:

Boehner: President Obama' s Fiscal Cliff Offer is "Nonsense," a "Non-Serious Proposal":

"A non-serious proposal. The president was asking for $1.6 trillion worth of, uh, new revenue over 10 years, twice as much as he's been asking for in public. He has stimulus spending in here that exceeded the amount of new cuts that he was willing to consider. It was not a serious offer. ... I looked at [Secretary Geithner] and I said, 'you can't be serious?' ... You know, we've got several weeks between Election Day and the end of the year. And, uh -- and three of those way -- weeks have been wasted, uh, with the -- with this nonsense."

Boehner: President Obama Asked for More New Spending Than Spending Cuts:

"We've put a serious offer on the table by putting revenues up there to try to get this question resolved. But the White House has responded with virtually nothing. They have actually asked for more revenue than they've been -- been asking for the whole entire time. ... And all of this new stimulus spending would literally be more than the spending cuts that he was willing to put on the table. ... Look at the fact that they put $400 billion worth of unspecified cuts up that they'd be willing to talk about, but yet, at the same time, that's over $400 billion over 10 years. Uh, while he wants over $400 billion in new stimulus spending. And this is -- this is -- it's a non-serious proposal."

Boehner: What Will President Obama Do With $1.6 Trillion? Spend It!

"I mean think about the -- the proposal we got from the president. If we gave the president $1.6 trillion of new money, what do you think he'd do with it? He's going to spend it. It's what Washington does. ... They'll spend it."

Boehner: Raising Tax Rates Will Hurt Small Businesses and Destroy Jobs:

"Now, listen, I believe that raising tax rates hurts our economy, hurts the prospects for more jobs in our country. And I realize that the president may disagree. But the fact is, is that if there's another way to get revenue, uh, from upper income Americans, that doesn't hurt our economy, then why wouldn't we consider it?"

Boehner: Spending Cuts & Reforms Must Exceed Any Increase in the Debt Limit:

"Forever. Silliness. Congress is never going to give up this power. I've made it clear to the president that every time we get to the debt limit, we need cuts and reforms that are greater than the increase in the debt limit. It's the only way to leverage the political process to produce more change than what it would if left alone.

Boehner: Going Over the Fiscal Cliff Will Hurt Our Economy, Is Not Fair to the American People:

"[T]his isn't an issue about Democrats and Republicans. My goodness, this is about our country. And we get -- ought to get serious about dealing with the problems at the end of the year. And we need to get serious about our deficit and our debt, uh, that are burying our children's future. ... [G]oing over the cliff will hurt our economy, will hurt job creation in our country. It's not fair to the American people. ... This agreement should come sooner rather than later, because just the threat of the fiscal cliff is already hurting our economy."

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Where are Democrats’ Spending Cuts?
Posted by Press Office on November 29, 2012
As today’s news shows, it’s not Republicans who are standing in the way of the balanced solution President Obama wants for the fiscal cliff – his own party won’t get serious about cutting spending:
  • In “Obama's 'balanced' approach hits a Democratic wall,” the Los Angeles Times says while Republicans have offered revenue via tax reform and “limiting deductions,” Democrats in Congress are “entrenched” and demanding “no cuts in federal spending.”
  • Top Democrats “have resisted changes to entitlement programs as part of the fiscal-cliff negotiations,” says the Washington Post.
  • “Democrats need to move on reforming entitlements to get a year-end budget deal, former Clinton White House chief of staff Erskine Bowles said Wednesday” according to Market Watch. “He said Republicans were clear that there’s need for revenue and for entitlement reforms – and added it’s up to Democrats to move in that direction.”
  • There has been “scant talk” from President Obama “about his priorities when it comes to curbing spending,” says the New York Times, even though he “says he wants a ‘balanced’ approach to restoring the nation’s fiscal order.”

Republicans have already met President Obama’s call for a balanced approach: the GOP offered to accept revenue via tax reform, and the House has passed two budgets outlining real spending cuts and reforms. Republicans also passed legislation stopping all of the tax hikes on middle class families and small businesses, and voted to replace the defense sequester with common-sense cuts.

So the key question remains: what cuts are Democrats willing to make to avert the fiscal cliff?

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Still Waiting for Answers on Benghazi
Posted by Press Office on November 09, 2012

On October 25, Speaker John Boehner sent a letter to President Obama asking him to answer several key questions and concerns about his administration’s response to the terrorist attack in Libya.

The president still hasn’t responded.

“Americans remain concerned and frustrated about how your Administration has handled the response to the attack,” wrote Boehner. For example, “The American public is increasingly reading information contradicting early accounts by your Administration of the causes of the events of the day.”

The administration itself has been a source for much of the confusion. USA Today highlights aCBS News interview from September 12 where President Obama “said it was ‘too early to tell’ whether the attack on the U.S. consulate in Libya was an act of terrorism.” Weeks later, the president claimed he had labeled it a “terrorist attack” the day after it occurred. The American people deserve an explanation.

Speaker Boehner also asked whether Ambassador Stevens ever made “any direct observations or [raised] any concerns” to the president or his staff “about the security situation” Libya. Fox Newsreports that “[t]he president did not give a yes-or-no answer” when “asked pointedly whether the Americans under attack in Benghazi, Libya, were denied requests for help during the attack.” Again, the American people deserve an explanation.

Click here to read Boehner’s letter and to see the other questions that remain unanswered by the president and his administration.


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Obama Admin Must Answer for Delphi Pension Scandal
Posted by Press Office on October 24, 2012
In southwest Ohio yesterday, President Obama once again failed to explain his administration’s role in slashing pensions for thousands of non-union auto workers in the Buckeye State and across the country.

President Obama often claims his taxpayer-funded bailout helped “save the U.S. auto industry.” But “in a growing scandal,” Liz Peek at the Fiscal Times says, “Obama’s former auto czar and two Treasury officials appear implicated in the decision to eliminate the pensions of 20,000 non-union workers at GM’s Delphi unit, while protecting benefits for UAW members.”

An op-ed by two economists in the Wall Street Journal notes that government-owned GM gave “gave $1 billion of bailout funds” to “the pensions of Delphi's UAW retirees.” But “Delphi's nonunion retirees and retirees in other unions did not fare so well. GM gave them nothing.” While the president’s union allies got a sweetheart deal, non-union workers at Delphi saw their pensions cut by as much as 70 percent.

Delphi retirees, their families, and taxpayers deserve to know why – and they deserve to know what role the Obama administration played in the process.

In 2010, then-Republican Leader John Boehner and Senator Roger Wicker (R-MS) asked the non-partisan Government Accountability Office (GAO) to investigate the Delphi pension scandal. The GAO agreed and issued its first report in early 2011. Speaker Boehner said the GAO report made it “more evident than ever that there was preferential treatment given to the unions at the expense of Delphi retirees.”

House Ways & Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp (R-MI) is demanding that the Obama administration release all documents about its involvement. But so far, the White House is stonewalling.

According to the Washington Free Beacon, “a Daily Caller FOIA request suggests that the Treasury Department and White House may have played a decisive role” in “the decision to wipe out the non-union pensions.” And one the president’s chief strategists “seemed to admit that President Barack Obama played a role in the lopsided deal.”

“It is time the Administration comes clean about the role it played in the slashing of the pensions of 20,000 Delphi employees,” says Chairman Camp. And if the White House fails to cooperate, “they may well find themselves on the receiving end of a subpoena…”

The Delphi pension scandal underscores the danger of government officials picking winners and losers in the private sector. And it highlights the importance of the nearly 40 House-passed jobs bills that are focused on helping create new jobs by removing government obstacles (like the president’s small business tax hike and health care law) that make it harder for small businesses to hire new workers.

The president needs to level with the workers in Ohio, Michigan, and elsewhere whose pensions were decimated while his union allies were made whole. And his administration needs to provide Congress with detailed answers about its involvement in this scandal at once.
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Boehner: Democrats’ “Thelma & Louise” Tax Hike Threatens Jobs, Families
Posted by Press Office on October 16, 2012

In a weekly column released in his Congressional District, Congressman John Boehner says the president’s “fiscal cliff” tax hikes pose a real threat to middle class families and small businesses – and the Democrats who are willing to drive us over the cliff in their quest to enact those tax hikes are practicing “‘Thelma and Louise’ economics.”

The House passed a bipartisan bill to avoid the “fiscal cliff” by stopping all of the president’s tax hikes, and voted to begin fixing the tax code to help grow our economy and bring jobs home from overseas. Republicans are working to “fight the debt through economic growth,” says Boehner – “and we won’t have economic growth if we raise taxes on small businesses.” Here’s an excerpt from his column:

“Driving off the fiscal cliff would have disastrous effects for our country. The nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office (CBO) says it would send the struggling U.S. economy into recession. And credit agencies such as Moody’s indicate another downgrade of the nation’s credit status is likely if an agreement isn’t reached to steer clear.

“The stance being taken by these Democratic senators is rooted in the flawed belief that our country can spend, tax, and borrow its way out of debt.

“The problem, as the Ernst & Young report illustrates, is that raising taxes on small businesses will destroy jobs and inhibit growth. The only way we can fix the deficit and address the debt is to get the economy moving again, and keep it moving. That requires reform of both the tax code and the way the federal government spends taxpayers’ money. Instead of raising tax rates on small businesses, we need an overhaul of the tax code that supports growth by closing loopholes and lowering taxes instead of raising them.”

To paraphrase the Wall Street Journal, Thelma & Louise may be a great movie – but it’s terrible economic policy. Read Boehner’s full column here.

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