Republican House Speaker John Boehner slammed President Barack Obama again on Thursday, accusing the White House of not being “serious” about including spending cuts in a deal over the fiscal cliff.
“President Obama wants to pretend spending isn’t the problem,” Boehner said. “That’s why we don’t have an agreement.”
It’s the same message that Republicans have been repeating for the past two weeks, as Republicans and the White House continue negotiations on how to avoid the cliff. In a press conference Wednesday, Boehner and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor indicated that little progress has been made toward getting a deal.
On Wednesday, Boehner spiced up his call for spending cut with a new chart, prepared by House Budget Chair Paul Ryan. Here’s the chart:
[credit provider=”Speaker John Boehner”]
Later, in response to a question from a reporter, Boehner rejected the idea that Obama could unilaterally raise the debt ceiling if Congress does not pass a deal to avoid the cliff.
“Congress is never going to give up its ability to control the purse,” he said, adding that the debt limit “should be used to bring fiscal sanity to Washington.”
Boehner also dismissed the growing criticism of his leadership from his party’s conservative flank: “I’m not concerned about my job as Speaker.”
Now here’s why Boehner could be in big trouble with the GOP base >
*This story was originally posted at 11:11 a.m., and has been updated to add Boehner’s remarks.