WASHINGTON House Speaker John Boehner said members of his Republican caucus refused to back his tax measure because they didn’t want to be accused of raising taxes.
It was “not the outcome I wanted, but it was the will of the House,” Boehner said. “They were dealing with the perception that someone might accuse them of raising taxes.”
Until Monday, President Barack Obama and Boehner had been edging closer to a deal that would have included $1 trillion each in tax increases and spending cuts.
Now that Boehner has pulled his plan, House members and senators won’t vote on the end-of-year budget issues until after Christmas, giving them less than a week to reach agreement to avert more than $600 billion in tax increases and spending cuts set to take effect in January.
“It looks like to me that obviously this is going to drag on into next year, which is going to hurt our economy,” Republican Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee said in an interview for Bloomberg Television’s Capitol Gains program. “So this will just drag on and on. And it really is about just political courage.”