- Beretta leaves Maryland over gun laws, heads for Tennessee
- Neal Boortz defends Hillary Clinton for representing child rapist
- House task force to recommend National Guard on border, faster deportations
- Top federal judge uses pizza to explain complex Obamacare situation
- Obama, Biden overhaul job training programs
- Drought-plagued Californians turn to paint to keep lawns green
- ISIL now forcing Iraqi shopkeepers to veil mannequins in Mosul
- 11 parents of Nigeria’s abducted girls die
- Genetic mapping triggers new hope on schizophrenia
- Turkish P.M. Erdogan won’t speak to Obama, but he’ll take calls from Biden
Restive Democrats warn Obama on deficit talks
Question of the Day
Turmoil in Democratic ranks spread Friday over President Obama’s bid to reduce spending on Social Security and Medicare as part of intensifying deficit-reduction talks with congressional Republican leaders.
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, California Democrat, met with Mr. Obama and Vice President Joseph R. Biden Jr. at the White House Friday morning. She declared later that House Democrats “would not reduce the deficit or subsidize tax cuts for the rich on the backs of America’s seniors.”
Sen. Sheldon Whitehouse, Rhode island Democrat, and Sen. Bernie Sanders, Vermont independent and one of the Senate’s most liberal members, held a conference call with representatives of more than 300 liberal groups, including MoveOn.org, the National Organization for Women and labor unions opposed to any cuts in entitlement programs such as Social Security.
“There’s been very little conversation between the White House and the Senate about this, and I think they’re making a grievous mistake if they think they can just present anything to us and assume that because we’re Democrats, we’ll go along with what the president has capitulated to,” Mr. Whitehouse said.
“These programs matter a lot to Democrats, as they should, because they matter a lot to the American people,” Mr. Carney said. “But absolutely there are tough choices here that in a different world we may not make.”
Negotiators from the administration and Congress are working through the weekend on proposals to reduce the deficit by up to $4 trillion over 10 years, primarily through spending cuts. Mr. Obama will meet again with congressional leaders at the White House Sunday to review the proposals.
The parties are trying to reach a deal before Aug. 2 to raise the nation’s debt limit of $14.29 trillion. Treasury Secretary Timothy M. Geither has warned that the U.S. would default on some of its obligations if the debt ceiling is not raised by the deadline. He said the fallout from default could lead to another recession.
Republican leaders are insisting on deep cuts in spending as part of any deal, and have said they will oppose broad-based tax increases.
In spite of the high stakes, Republicans expressed skepticism that negotiators will strike a compromise.
“It’s not like there’s an imminent deal about to happen,” House Speaker John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican, told reporters Friday. “There are serious disagreements about how to deal with this very serious problem.”
Asked about his expectations for Sunday’s scheduled meeting, Mr. Boehner held his hands wide apart and said, “I don’t know. I don’t think this problem has narrowed at all in the last several days.”
Mrs. Pelosi told reporters that she is still optimistic a deal can be reached. But, she said, “it has to be reflective of our values, because 10 years of a budget has a very serious impact on the future.”
She said any entitlement savings achieved through a “global grand plan” to reduce the deficit should be plowed back into the programs for seniors to extend the solvency of federal programs for the elderly.
© Copyright 2014 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.
About the Author
Dave Boyer is a White House correspondent for The Washington Times. A native of Allentown, Pa., Boyer worked for the Philadelphia Inquirer from 2002 to 2011 and also has covered Congress for the Times. He is a graduate of Penn State University. Boyer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Obama raises funds while international crises loom
- U.S. intelligence nearly certain pro-Russian separatists downed Malaysian Airlines flight
- Latest Obama claim: I don't learn anything from the news
- White House urges border-state governors to pressure Congress on $3.7B immigration bill
- Putin calls for cease-fire in Ukraine
Latest Blog Entries
- Obama and Boehner congratulate U.S. men's hockey on win over Russia
- Americans say income gap will shrink if government butts out, poll shows
- WH spokesman Jay Carney recognizes beard's 'insufficiency,' shaves it off
- Obama misses deadline again on budget
- Biden burns rubber in driveway, laments road restrictions
TWT Video Picks
The president could pay the full price for ignoring Congress
- IRS seeks help destroying another 3,200 computer hard drives
- D.C. appeals panel deals big blow to Obamacare subsidies
- Beretta moving to Tennessee over Maryland gun laws
- Gen. James Amos, Marine Corps commandant, slams Obama's handling of Iraq
- 'Straight White Guy Festival' supposedly set for Ohio park
- CARSON: Costco and the perils of mixing politics and business
- Hamas terrorists wear Israeli army uniforms to ambush soldiers in Gaza
- PRUDEN: A deadly enemy within exacerbating immigration crisis
- EDITORIAL: Obamacare in intensive care
- DEACE: How to go from civil rights icon to bigot in one quote
Obama's biggest White House 'fails'
Celebrities turned politicians
Athletes turned actors
20 gadgets that changed the world
Fighting in Iraq