Photo: Fox News
Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) said that John Boehner’s role as Speaker of the House could be in jeopardy if he allows more revenues to be part of a deal to avert the sequester, giving a sense of how far Republicans are willing to go to stick to their positions in the latest federal budget battle.”I don’t quite honestly think that Speaker Boehner would be Speaker if that happens,” Johnson told Fox News in a report from White House correspondent Ed Henry that aired Monday evening. “I think he would lose his speakership.”
Speaking to Business Insider on Monday in New York, Johnson doubled down.
“If you cave and delay, then absolutely he could lose his speakership,” Johnson said. “The reason that he got a deal on the [sequester] extension in the first place is because there was a stark guarantee that the cuts would go into effect. We have to maintain that hammer.”
Boehner was re-elected as the House Speaker in January, just two days after the parties agreed to a deal to avert the fiscal cliff that included higher tax rates.
This time, both parties say they want to avert the sequester, the set of $1.2 trillion in across-the-board spending cuts over 10 years set to begin kicking in on Friday. But they disagree on how to do that. Boehner and Republicans want different, targeted spending cuts in entitlements and social programs. President Barack Obama and Democrats want to include revenue from closing tax loopholes.
Boehner also faced pressure from Sen. Rand Paul on Monday, who criticised GOP leadership in New York City on Monday.
In a press conference on Monday, however, Boehner showed no signs of hedging on the GOP’s position this time.
“Mr. President, you got your tax increase,” he said.
Watch the clip of Johnson’s comments below (they come around the 3:15 mark):
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