Republicans sources say House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) told members on a conference call this afternoon that talks with Congressional Democrats have yet to yield an agreement, but said House Republicans would move forward with a plan of their own. Boehner said he hoped to have details of the plan to present members on Monday, but said it will be a “two-tiered” approach (meaning the debt ceiling will have to be raised again sometime early next year) and will “reflect the principles” outlined in the House-passed “Cut, Cap and Balance” legislation.
Party leaders slammed President Obama, who has threatened to veto any short-term increase in the debt ceiling, as being primarily focused on his reelection campaign, rather than solving the debt crisis. They also cited Obama’s insistence on raising taxes as the reason why talks with the White House fell apart. Members were urged to remain united in the coming days in order to maximize their leverage in negotiations, but Boehner stressed that the best way to thwart Obama now would be to put forward a plan that can pass both houses.
As Andy notes, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D., Nev.) looks like he’ll be bringing his own plan forward in the Senate, which would allow for a single increase that would ensure that Congress doesn’t have to vote on one again until after the 2012 election. One source says the Republican legislation could be filed as early as tonight in the House Rules Committee and available publicly sometime tomorrow. Boehner had previously said he hoped to unveil a plan on Sunday evening before financial markets open in Asia to avoid a potential panic, so it will be interesting to see how markets there, and in the United States, react when trading opens. However, as Eric Cantor spokesman Brad Dayspring pointed out “There are 9 days before Aug 2. For those talking about Asian Markets, would recommend not stoking fear/concern. Work is being done.”
Meanwhile, the staring contest in Washington continues…
UPDATE: Harry Reid, in a statement, blames the Republicans’ insistence on a short-term increase for a lack of an agreement, and says he is working on his own proposal that will meet the GOP’s “two major criteria.” Reid’s plan, he says, will increase the debt ceiling by $2.4 trillion (enough to get through the 2012 election), will include $2.7 trillion in spending cuts over 10 years and “not include revenues.” Boehner’s two-tiered approach, he said, was a “non-starter” in the Senate and with the president.
“We hope Speaker Boehner will abandon his ‘my way or the highway’ approach, and join us in forging a bipartisan compromise along these lines,” Reid said.