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Congressman Boehner on PBS: Senate Dems Stalling Jobs Bills, Want No Part of Cutting Spending

American Government

Congressman Boehner on PBS: Senate Dems Stalling Jobs Bills, Want No Part of Cutting Spending

Congressman John Boehner
February 7, 2012

In an interview with PBS NewsHour’s Judy Woodruff, Congressman John Boehner discussed Senate Democrats’ unwillingness to act on bipartisan initiatives that help create new private-sector jobs or stop Washington from spending money it doesn’t have. Boehner also highlighted the upcoming vote on the earmark-free American Energy & Infrastructure Jobs Act (H.R. 7). Video and key excerpts are below:

Boehner: Senate Democrats Still Haven’t Acted on Nearly 30 Bipartisan House-Passed Jobs Bills:

[W]hen we look at this year, our focus is going to continue to be on jobs, like it was last year. … [T]he House has had our plan for American job creators since last May. We’ve passed 30 bills that would help our economy grow — 27 of them are still sitting in the United States Senate. And if we’re serious about jobs and the economy, the Senate has to take up some of these bills and actually act.

Boehner: Senate Democrats Haven’t Presented a Full-Year Payroll Tax Cut Plan, Want No Part of Cutting Spending

We passed a year-long extension in the payroll tax credit in December. … We had reasonable offsets in spending that, most of them, came from the president’s own budget. And so we’ve done our work. We’re in conference with the Senate trying to come to agreement. But it’s pretty clear that our Senate colleagues want no part of cutting spending. Now, if we’re going to extend the payroll tax credit, and we’re going to extend unemployment benefits with reforms, and take care of the so-called doc fix, we’re going to have to offset this spending. But my colleagues on the other side of the aisle don’t want to offset this spending. So it’s — we’re in conference with the Senate. Hopefully we’ll be able to come to an agreement quickly.

Boehner: Earmark-Free American Energy & Infrastructure Jobs Act Expands Energy Production to Create Jobs and Repair Roads & Bridges

The American Energy and Infrastructure Jobs Act will be up here in the next couple of weeks, taking, opening up more areas for energy development and using those new revenues — royalty revenues — to pay for our aging infrastructure that needs real repair. And we’ll do this in a way that has no earmarks. You know, the last highway bill had 6,317 earmarks in it, little projects for members of Congress and their districts — some of them not so little. No earmarks.

Boehner: Republican-Led House Helped Cut $2.1 Trillion in Government Spending So Far

One of the real successes from last year is that we were able to cut $2.1 trillion worth of spending over the next 10 years. Now that’s already law. It’s going to happen.

Boehner: Future of Our Country Depends on Solving Washington’s Spending-Driven Debt Problem

I thought if we reformed our tax system, we could produce more revenue from it. But I told the president, I’m not going to put more revenue on the table unless you’re willing to make real changes to our entitlement programs because in their current form, they’re not sustainable. The president would never say yes to any of those changes to the entitlement programs. And even though I had revenue on the table and the president hadn’t said yes, he came back and wanted $500 billion more in revenue. There’s a way to do this, but it takes courage. And I am more than willing to address this problem at any moment with the president, because the future of our country depends on us coming to an agreement that will begin to solve our debt problem.

Boehner: GOP-Led House of Representatives is Listening to the American People

I promised the American people when we took the majority that my job was to listen to them every day and to follow their will. And while it’s – whether it’s cutting spending or getting our economy going again, we’ve done what the American people have asked us to do.

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