Letter to colleagues here (server may be busy).
UPDATE, 9:15 p.m.: In an email from MIchael Steel, Boehner spokesperson —
Folks – The White House is misleading reporters tonight by claiming that new revenue in the framework that was discussed would have been generated by letting the current tax rates expire. That is simply false. Under the framework, a CEILING was offered by the White House that would generate $800 billion in new revenue over ten years. This would be done through comprehensive tax reform that would clear out deductions, credits, and loopholes in the system – and spur economic growth.
After the gang of six plan came out, the White House moved the goal posts and insisted on $400 billion more in higher taxes – a 50% increase in revenue – and wanted that to be the FLOOR instead of the ceiling. The President acknowledged this in his remarks tonight. “Letting tax cuts expire” was never part of the tax reform agreed to. Please let me know if you have any questions. – steel
Summary of the White House ‘walk backs’ during discussions of the ‘framework.’:
· The White House agreed to a revenue total that would set a ceiling of about $800 billion in new revenue over ten years that could be generated through economic growth and efficiencies in our tax system (not tax hikes).
· After the ‘Gang of Six’ plan was released, and in the wake the reaction from Hill Democrats, they moved the goal posts and insisted on $400 billion more in higher taxes – a 50% increase – and wanted that to the floor instead of the ceiling.
· At the same time, they struck principles of tax reform that were already agreed to, including
o a protection against tax hikes on small businesses
o and a guarantee that there were would be only 3 tax rates and highest one would be below 35%
· There was an agreement to change the way government calculates inflation that would significantly extend Social Security’s solvency
· The White House moved off of a previously agreed to solvency target, suggesting a weaker level with 25% less in savings
UPDATE, 9:20 p.m.: BOOHOO, OUCH; What a crybaby –
President Obama unleashed a tirade of frustration, anger and disappointment toward Republicans Friday after House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) announced he was withdrawing from negotiations with White House.
The president, in possibly his most emotional and stern appearance to date, said in no uncertain terms that he is summoning congressional leaders to the White House on Saturday morning.
“I want them here at 11 o’clock tomorrow,” Obama said. “We have run out of time, and they are going to have to explain to me how it is we are going to default.”
Obama’s fury toward Boehner was on full display as he several times accused the Speaker of walking away from the talks.
“I’ve been left at the altar now a couple of times,” Obama said.
The president was angry on a number of counts, but he seemed especially miffed by Boehner’s refusal to communicate with him on Friday before he walked away from the table.
Obama said he had a “cordial” relationship with Boehner “up until sometime today when I couldn’t get a phone call returned.”