Boehner to GOP on Dems: “We’re gonna kick their ass” on the budget; Update: House, Senate agree to top-line spending figure?

posted at 4:15 pm on March 30, 2011 by Allahpundit

Grain of salt here: The scoop comes courtesy of lefty Greg Sargent, who has an incentive to push the “Republican schism” storyline on which his post elaborates. Even so, he’s not the only one reporting today on a split between Boehner and Cantor on how to approach budget negotiations. And he’s not the only one alleging that the GOP leadership — or, at least, Boehner and Kevin McCarthy — are chatting with Democrats about a possible compromise bill.

“If we stick together and keep the pressure on the Democrats, we’re going to win this fight,” Boehner told assembled Republicans, according to the source. “We’re gonna kick their ass.”…

Here’s what’s happening, according to the source: The essence of Cantor’s disagreement with Boehner is that Republicans should not be starting with that number in talks with the White House, and that they should be starting with a higher level of cuts, beause starting at $30 billion ensures that they will ultimately get less — which will be unacceptable to conservatives. Cantor does disagree with Boehner over how deep the cuts should ultimately be, but a more important point of disagreement is over how to handle these negotiations…

Here’s where Boehner’s “kick ass” quote comes in. Republican aides believe that Boehner is closing in on a $30 billion deal with the White House. They think he’s using rousing language before the caucus to signal to conservatives that he’s drawing a hard line in talks, partly because he knows that ultimately those talks will likely yield a deal that will be difficult to sell to them. Signaling a real fight now could make that sell easier later.

I don’t understand either part of that. The White House knows that Boehner’s under intense pressure from tea partiers to stick to the $61 billion figure that the GOP pledged to cut. That pressure is the only reason Democrats have come up to offering $30 billion or so; realistically, they have to meet him at least halfway or he’ll be forced to walk away. So they are starting at a higher level of cuts, and the White House will probably have to come up further towards that level to make this compromise remotely feasible. Likewise, the tough talk about “kicking ass” won’t mean jack to tea-party freshmen if/when Boehner comes back with a package that falls short of the $61 billion mark, regardless of what it consists of. That’s precisely why he’s reaching out to Blue Dogs, of course — because he knows that plenty of freshmen will walk away from the deal and he’ll need to replace their votes in order to pass the thing. (In fact, I wonder if the “split” between him and Cantor hasn’t been contrived as a sort of good cop/bad cop play for the benefit of the base, to reassure them that their deep-cutting interests are being represented in the leadership even as that same leadership inches towards a compromise.) The “kick ass” line only makes sense if he’s trying to gird them for battle on the truly important budget to come, the one for next year that’ll finally finally finally tackle entitlements. I.e. “let’s get this year’s small-potatoes budget off the table and then kick their ass where it counts.”

Via RCP, below you’ll find Boehner at this morning’s presser urging Reid and the Senate to pass a damned bill of their own already so that both sides have some cards on the table. Why won’t that happen? Quote:

Democrats call the suggestion that they simply bring their proposal to the floor unrealistic. Without a deal with House Republicans, the plan would not pass the House. Additionally, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., according to GOP aides, is following Boehner’s lead. GOP aides say McConnell and Senate Republicans will back a bill if Boehner and House Republicans will. Senate Republicans are also unlikely to provide the seven votes Reid would need to pass his own bill without House GOP support.

If Reid gets a bill through with seven Republican votes, it’ll only weaken Boehner’s hand by proving that there’s bipartisan support for cuts below the magic $61 billion number. So passing the damned bill is a nonstarter; the only potential starters are (a) a shutdown or (b) negotiating a damned compromise with the White House, if/when President Present ever decides he’s ready to engage.

Update: Let the “ass-kicking” begin!

The White House and congressional Republicans edged closer to a spending-cut deal Wednesday as Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) directed House Appropriations Committee staff to begin negotiations with their Senate-side counterparts.

The move suggests the two sides have agreed on a top-line number, as the Republican chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.), has said consistently he would not initiate talks unless a figure had been settled on.

They won’t say what the figure is but an aide will say that they won’t be discussing the House riders related to Planned Parenthood, etc. Since it’d be insane to reach a delicate deal on the budget and then have it implode over a stalemate on hot-button issues like that, I can only assume that Boehner’s planning to strip the riders out if need be and then force a vote on them as separate bills.


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We’re gonna kick their behinds…for the children.
sniff, sniff

james23 on March 30, 2011 at 4:18 PM

Just do it!

clnurnberg on March 30, 2011 at 4:19 PM

30-61 billion? That’s not even a start.

WitchDoctor on March 30, 2011 at 4:19 PM

enough talk its time to walk the walk.

unseen on March 30, 2011 at 4:21 PM

These are EXTREME deficits

J_Crater on March 30, 2011 at 4:22 PM

I will believe it when I see it!

My advice to Mr Boehner is to loose the tan and grow a pair.

400lb Gorilla on March 30, 2011 at 4:23 PM

30-61 billion? That’s not even a start.

WitchDoctor on March 30, 2011 at 4:19 PM

Hey, no sneezing at the prospect of an additional 31 bil in cuts. I, for one, would like to be able to tell my grandaughter one day that because we won in 2010 she gets to work a 17:59 work day for our Chinese overlords as opposed to a full 18 hours.

Kataklysmic on March 30, 2011 at 4:24 PM

So we have Spanky and Alfalfa in charge?

sharrukin on March 30, 2011 at 4:25 PM

…stick to the $61 billion figure that the GOP pledged to cut.

FACT CHECK ALARM:

It was $100 BILLION that the GOP (at least the GOP candidates we supported) pledged to cut: not $61 Billion!!!

…and the number should be closer to $610 Billion!!! Our debt is growing by $8 Billion per day!!!

landlines on March 30, 2011 at 4:26 PM

I don’t understand either part of that.

Sounds like good cop/bad cop to me. Boehner can tell Dems to get on board and help him out before bad cop Cantor raises the stakes. At the very least, it makes Boehner look “reasonable”.

taznar on March 30, 2011 at 4:26 PM

Obama’s tiny nuts are still an order of magnitude larger than John “Crybaby” Boehner.

At CPAC – this guy promised, with a “read my lips” statement – that the GOP would cut $100B and NOT … STOP … THERE.

The next week – he passed a budget with only $61B in cuts.

And now he’s going to compromise in the neighborhood of $30B.

R . O . T . F . L . M . F. A . O !!!

What a damned WEAK player!

And hey Allah – who would be the seven GOP votes who would pass a Democratic budget proposal in the Senate? Oh yeah that’s right – Scott Brown and the usual RINO suspects. So glad we have them onboard our train!!

HondaV65 on March 30, 2011 at 4:26 PM

Boehner is either gonna kick their ass in 2011 or he’s gonna kiss my ass in 2012.

Doughboy on March 30, 2011 at 4:27 PM

Mr. Reid, your record on spending in the Senate is one of EXTREME failure. You have failed to pass a budget, failed to restrain spending, and failed to put our country on sound fiscal footing.

J_Crater on March 30, 2011 at 4:27 PM

Will believe it when we see it !

Sandybourne on March 30, 2011 at 4:27 PM

Take no prisoners!

sandee on March 30, 2011 at 4:32 PM

At the beginning of all this, Boehner should have said: “We won. And we’re not raising the debt ceiling.” The cuts would have taken care of themselves.

Emperor Norton on March 30, 2011 at 4:32 PM

Lance the boil already.

Naturally Curly on March 30, 2011 at 4:33 PM

Like the meme says: Pics or it didn’t happen!

Better yet, CUTS OR GTFO!

Sekhmet on March 30, 2011 at 4:33 PM

I love how all these damn politicians don’t bat an eye when they spend a trillion here or a trillion there but go full retard bat sh^t crazy on these EXTERME END OF THE WORLD single digit billion dollar “cuts”.

FireFly on March 30, 2011 at 4:37 PM

Blah, blah, blah.

Cut entitlements too.

PattyJ on March 30, 2011 at 4:40 PM

OK, I know math is hard for those bozos in Congress. Here is the deal

Our annual budget is just over $3 TRILLION dollars. That is a 3 with TWELVE zeros behind it. The worse part is, we borrow 40 cents for every dollar spent. So we are borrowing somewhere between 1.2 and 1.4 trillion dollars in this fiscal year.

I figured out what 61 million dollars is, relative to this budget. Remember out of 1,000 dollars spent, we are borrowing 400 dollars. The cuts they are arguing about are only TWO CENTS out of every $1,000 in this budget.

They are arguing about TWO CENTS for every $1,000 they are spending!!!!!!!!!!!!

/ facepalm

karenhasfreedom on March 30, 2011 at 4:41 PM

At the beginning of all this, Boehner should have said: “We won. And we’re not raising the debt ceiling.” The cuts would have taken care of themselves.

Emperor Norton on March 30, 2011 at 4:32 PM

He would need actual convictions first.

The guy is a blubbering fool and a progressive.

darwin-t on March 30, 2011 at 4:43 PM

We need those bozos to go on TV with 10 $100 bills and 2 pennies. Then we need to tell the audience that Congress is arguing over 2 pennies to cut, out of the $1000 on the table.

karenhasfreedom on March 30, 2011 at 4:44 PM

Deal? We don’t need no stinking deal… Shut it down!

sandee on March 30, 2011 at 4:44 PM

At the very least, it makes Boehner look “reasonable”.

taznar on March 30, 2011 at 4:26 PM

Maybe to the idiots who are intent on worrying about “how it looks to the voters/donors” and are completely ignoring the simple fact that we are in a fiscal hole of irreparable proportions.

Congress can argue about this all they want, but in the end there are only two options: 1) shut down all nonessential functions (keeping the lights on and the shores defended) including all the perks Congress keeps for itself or 2) the end of the United States.

Boehner, McConnell and all the big talkers won’t face that, so they are, by dithering and talking endlessly, complicit in what amounts to economic treason.

MrScribbler on March 30, 2011 at 4:47 PM

So does it defund the implementation of Obamacare? If not then I don’t give a damn..

Zippy_Slug on March 30, 2011 at 4:47 PM

Deals, smeals. If Boehner’s deal is $30B, it’s not the Dems a$$ he’s kicking, it’s their milk cartons.

Get a spine and close down the government if the Dems can’t agree to keeping the country solvent with real-life spending cuts. These numbers floating about are fantasy land.

Dusty on March 30, 2011 at 4:50 PM

I don’t get what the heck is going on here. Why are Boehner and Cantor playing games with us??? What is cutting 30billion supposed to do since as someone pointed out were in the whole 8 billion per day?

We need to clear out the rest of the GOP if possible or just go ahead and start talking c i v i l w a r! I’m sick of this!

CCRWM on March 30, 2011 at 4:55 PM

Thirty billion is one pile of pure crap. 14 trillion in debt and this is the best they can do?

Run ‘em all out of office!

Rovin on March 30, 2011 at 4:55 PM

karenhasfreedom on March 30, 2011 at 4:41 PM

..excellent job of making this understandable for the common man!

The War Planner on March 30, 2011 at 4:55 PM

I can only assume that Boehner’s planning to strip the riders out if need be and then force a vote on them as separate bills.

You’d be better to assume that Boehner is about to give the order for the GOP to bend over!!

HondaV65 on March 30, 2011 at 5:00 PM

karenhasfreedom on March 30, 2011 at 4:41 PM
..excellent job of making this understandable for the common man!

The War Planner on March 30, 2011 at 4:55 PM

And for maroon’s like myself, too ….

Jerome Horwitz on March 30, 2011 at 5:04 PM

$61 billions is a joke. It’s better than the Dems will offer, but $61B is barely even a good first step.

emz35 on March 30, 2011 at 5:06 PM

How do we get the pundits on tv to show up with 10, $1000 bills and 2 cents and make this point?

Someone better looking than me who knows how to make a youtube needs to do this and get it to go viral.

karenhasfreedom on March 30, 2011 at 5:07 PM

HR 278: The “We Tried Hard To Cut Spending Spending Act”; features $23 billion in new spending.

BobMbx on March 30, 2011 at 5:08 PM

U.S. America is scroomed, from all 360 degrees.

Schadenfreude on March 30, 2011 at 5:09 PM

If Boehner does a deal here for less than $61B – he needs to resign as speaker immediately after.

This guy promised at CPAC (in February) … “Next week we are cutting $100B and we are NOT stopping there”. He lied. The next week he went in and passed only $61B in cuts – then LIED again by claiming it was $100B in cuts (by “inventing” $40B in additional cuts from Obama’s IMAGINARY budget during the lame duck session).

And now – because he’s deathly afraid of taking a hit if the government shuts down … he’s going to cut a deal for less than $61B and probably closer to the White House’s $30B.

Game … Set … Match … Boehner – YOU LOSE.

It’s time for him to resign if he doesn’t get every penny of those $61B in cuts the GOP house passed!

HondaV65 on March 30, 2011 at 5:09 PM

FACT CHECK ALARM:

It was $100 BILLION that the GOP (at least the GOP candidates we supported) pledged to cut: not $61 Billion!!!

…and the number should be closer to $610 Billion!!! Our debt is growing by $8 Billion per day!!!

landlines on March 30, 2011 at 4:26 PM

Depends on how you spin it- $60 billion compared to the 2010 budget, or Obama’s proposed budget?

They could also argue that broken down monthly, it represents over $100 million in cuts.

In any case, with the Dems holding the Senate and White House, the GOP is limited in what it can do. This is why elections and majorities matter- if not for the GOP taking the House, the Dems would’ve passed yet another spending increase.

Besides, the difference between $60 billion in cuts and, say, $30 billion is little more than a rounding error compared to the $3 trillion dollar overall budget. Take what we can get now, and focus on the 2012 budget and elections.

Hollowpoint on March 30, 2011 at 5:09 PM

I just hope the deal doesn’t include the GOP’s proposed cuts in border security.

Jon0815 on March 30, 2011 at 5:11 PM

Ruling class to the voter class. You’ll have to pry your hard earned dollars from our cold dead hands before we’ll ever give them up!
Voter class to the ruling class. Don’t tempt us….

chickasaw42 on March 30, 2011 at 5:23 PM

Who can even tell what the numbers mean? Is $1 cut in actual cut as in 2012 will be $1 less spending than 2011?

Or is it $1 cut as in we were going to increase spending by $10 and now we’re only increasing by $9, so we cut $1?

Or is it we were going to increase spending by $12 then we decided only $11 then upped it to $13 and now we’re back to $12, so really we saved another $1 even though we’re still raising spending by the exact same amount before the cut?

I don’t think Boehner or Reid or Obama or anyone for that matter has any clue what any of these numbers really mean.

angryed on March 30, 2011 at 5:25 PM

It was $100 BILLION that the GOP (at least the GOP candidates we supported) pledged to cut: not $61 Billion!!!

…and the number should be closer to $610 Billion!!! Our debt is growing by $8 Billion per day!!!

landlines on March 30, 2011 at 4:26 PM

To be fair, the pledge was for the 2012 budget. These guys are still cleaning up the 2011 mess left by Pelosi. I really am beginning to believe the Dems are playing rope-a-dope with the GOP using CRs. By the time we’re done, we won’t have time to work on 2012 and we’ll start another round of CRs.

Kafir on March 30, 2011 at 5:33 PM

They cut 6 billion on the same day we borrowed an extra 70 billion…. Now they are talking about major cuts of 60 billion????? Hmmmm, maybe we do need a third party. Maybe we need to kick the Rep butts and the Dem Butts out of office!

jeffn21 on March 30, 2011 at 5:34 PM

Cutting $30 billion from the budget is the same as me not buying one fifty cent pack of gum. Boehner is a gelding.

Mini-14 on March 30, 2011 at 5:38 PM

They cut 6 billion on the same day we borrowed an extra 70 billion…. Now they are talking about major cuts of 60 billion????? Hmmmm, maybe we do need a third party. Maybe we need to kick the Rep butts and the Dem Butts out of office!

jeffn21 on March 30, 2011 at 5:34 PM

Yeah! Let’s form a 3rd party comprised only of True Conservatives, splitting the Republican vote and thus giving the Dems a permanent majority. That’ll show ‘em!

Hollowpoint on March 30, 2011 at 5:41 PM

So our side caved again. News at 11.

SouthernGent on March 30, 2011 at 5:44 PM

That’s precisely why he’s reaching out to Blue Dogs

How stupid can the Republican leadership be?

The Blue Dogs’ support of ObamaCare removed all doubt that they are anything but different colored Yellow Dog Democrats.

RJL on March 30, 2011 at 5:44 PM

Boehner, the Nutless Wonder.

Shut the government down.

OhioCoastie on March 30, 2011 at 5:59 PM

Yeah! Let’s form a 3rd party comprised only of True Conservatives, splitting the Republican vote and thus giving the Dems a permanent majority. That’ll show ‘em!

Hollowpoint on March 30, 2011 at 5:41 PM

Yeah, brilliant; Ross Perot all over again.

slickwillie2001 on March 30, 2011 at 6:02 PM

1.4 Trillion dollar projected deficit this year!

1400 BILLION dollar projected Deficit this year!

100, 60, 30 Billion dollar cut to 1400 BILLION Dollar deficit!

Hey Bawl Baby Boehner thats’ not an ass kicking thats’ an ass LICKING!

Resign Bawl Baby, resign now, we cannot afford anymore of the two party two step!

Don’t resign the speakership Bawl Baby, resign as a congress critter, you and your buddies are not up to the job!

After the message sent last fall you come to the table with this!

The SOCIALISTS are laughing themselves silly!

dhunter on March 30, 2011 at 6:18 PM

Oh and this leaves the 105 Billion for OBlahBlahcare implementation untouched!

Go home worms and let the girls try otherwise its’ third Party time.

There is no difference between 1400 Billion and 1340 Billion or 1360 Billion its’ all our kids money that they are being sold into servitude for by a bunch of corrupt ASS LICKERS!

dhunter on March 30, 2011 at 6:22 PM

The move suggests the two sides have agreed on a top-line number, as the Republican chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.), has said consistently he would not initiate talks unless a figure had been settled on.

It friggin’ better be North of $60B….I’ve pretty much had it with this squish.

Tim_CA on March 30, 2011 at 6:24 PM

Yeah! Let’s form a 3rd party comprised only of True Conservatives, splitting the Republican vote and thus giving the Dems a permanent majority. That’ll show ‘em!

Hollowpoint on March 30, 2011 at 5:41 PM

You think the true cons care about winning? REALLY? They’re more in love with their own purity and martyrdom than they are about actually beating the Democrats.

Vyce on March 30, 2011 at 6:32 PM

My advice to Mr Boehner is to loose the tan and grow a pair.

400lb Gorilla on March 30, 2011 at 4:23 PM

sez the anonymous poster typing away in the basement of his aunt’s home…

right2bright on March 30, 2011 at 6:37 PM

There is a zero missing on the end of every proposed cut number.

Vashta.Nerada on March 30, 2011 at 6:38 PM

Boehner, the Nutless Wonder.

Shut the government down.

OhioCoastie on March 30, 2011 at 5:59 PM

You know, if the economy gets any worse, you might lose your paper route.
The “Nutless Wonder” is one of the most powerful men in the U.S….and you are???

right2bright on March 30, 2011 at 6:39 PM

right2bright on March 30, 2011 at 6:39 PM

Are you Mr Weepy’s brother in law or something?

sharrukin on March 30, 2011 at 6:41 PM

Shut it down!

GarandFan on March 30, 2011 at 6:50 PM

How stupid can the Republican leadership be?

The Blue Dogs’ support of ObamaCare removed all doubt that they are anything but different colored Yellow Dog Democrats.

RJL on March 30, 2011 at 5:44 PM

Eh, the Blue Dogs – the ones that are left – probably ARE likely to side with the GOP, if only because at this point, the only way they’re going to continue to survive in Congress is if they put a bit of distance between themselves and Granny Pelosi.

But look, I covered this in the headline thread earlier today. Senate Democrats want to force a shutdown, because they know that if they DO get a shutdown NOW, it imperils Republicans for the entire 2012 budget battle that will come later this year. They’re counting on being able to demagogue the issue to hurt Republicans if a shutdown happens now, and the sad fact is, they’re probably RIGHT. People keep saying, “well, this is different than 1994!” Only slightly. The only difference is that at the moment, blame would be split kind of evenly between Republicans and Democrats, but do you honestly think that will change in FAVOR of Republicans? Never. Underestimate. The media machine. It’s essentially destroyed Walker and the WI GOP, in the short term at least, even though polls showed that the public there AGREED with the general concept behind Walker’s reforms on CBR.

So unless Boehner is doing some sort of good cop / bad cop act with Cantor (which is possible, but I’m not sure), he’s trying to get some bipartisan support for this next proposal so that he can use it as a railroad spike in the temple of Schumer, Reid and all of the other d**chebags in the Senate. It will become somewhat less possible for Senate Dems to reject as “extreme” a House bill that has a significant number of their House caucus signed on to it.

Vyce on March 30, 2011 at 6:51 PM

Yeah! Let’s form a 3rd party comprised only of True Conservatives, splitting the Republican vote and thus giving the Dems a permanent majority. That’ll show ‘em!

Hollowpoint on March 30, 2011 at 5:41 PM

You think the true cons care about winning? REALLY? They’re more in love with their own purity and martyrdom than they are about actually beating the Democrats.

Vyce on March 30, 2011 at 6:32 PM

Cutting 60 BILLION out of 1400 BILLION dollar deficit is not a win its NO DIFFERENCE!

They are both DEMOCRATS for all intensive purposes.

If I gave one of you 1400 dollars the other 1360 and myself 1340 Whats the difference? What can you buy that I can’t.

Now multiply those numbers by a Billion!

1400 x 1,000,000,000! NO DIFFERENCE!

Yep THIRD PARTY that embraces disaffected conservatives from both parties!

And leave the social issues to the States where they belong!

dhunter on March 30, 2011 at 6:59 PM

It is time for the GOP leadership in the House and Senate to go. They have been there too long. It is way past time for them to retire.

Sporty1946 on March 31, 2011 at 8:57 AM

The total liabilities of the United States government, including future social security and medicare payments that the U.S. government is already committed to pay out, now exceed 65 TRILLION dollars, which is more than the entire GDP of the whole world…

… and the people responsible for this are quibbling over a few Billion, playing politics, and calling any responsible financial decisions “extreme”.

Wrap you minds around that…

Seven Percent Solution on March 31, 2011 at 12:50 PM

Yep THIRD PARTY that embraces disaffected conservatives from both parties!

And leave the social issues to the States where they belong!

dhunter on March 30, 2011 at 6:59 PM

And the win goes to … 0bama And His Democrat Party! Hurras!!!

Two TRILLION DOLLAR budgets, here we come! /sarc

DannoJyd on March 31, 2011 at 8:38 PM