Kabuki Theater in Washington? Impossible, except for every single day that is. During the ‘fiscal cliff’ news conference today, House Speaker weighed in calling on President Obama and Democrats to be specific over entitlement cuts in order to balance their calls for tax increases in a hypothetical deal to avert the so-called “fiscal cliff. Republican rhetoric has involved cutting what they perceive as ‘entitlement’ programs, however, GOP lawmakers have yet to be specify how much, or how they want to cut the programs.
The question posed to Boehner was, “Why will you not tell Democrats, what specific spending cuts you would like to see, especially within entitlements?”
Transcript via Think Progress:
Boehner: It’s been very clear over the last year and a half. I’ve talked to the President about many of them. You can look at our budget, where we outlined very specific proposals, where we passed in last year’s budget and the budget from the year before. We know what the menu is, what we don’t know is what the White house is willing to do to get serious about solving our debt crisis.
Question: So your 2011 position still stands, then? I mean, are you still offering, those talks from 2011, is that still the basis here?
Boehner Listen, I’m not going to get into the details, but it’s very clear what kind of spending cuts need to occur, but we have no idea what the White House is willing to do.
Using these rules which Boehner is declaring as necessary, the GOP game of chicken should be played out with Obama throwing a few ‘entitlement’ bones to the Republicans for them to ravage, then after Tea Party peer pressure, Boehner will come back with, “It’s not enough.”
How do we know this? Because it’s all happened before. As reported here in July of 2011, President Obama was offering a debt ceiling deal with far less revenue than the bipartisan ‘Gang of Six’ — Harry Reid offered an all-cuts deal that would make any Republican weep tears of joy — but, the Tea Party-led House still said no.