At a press conference today with Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA), House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) underscored the need for President Obama and his Democratic-controlled Senate to take action to avert the massive tax hikes and replace the defense sequester scheduled to take effect in just 10 days. As Speaker Boehner noted, the House has already passed legislation to avert the entire fiscal cliff, and it is now up to the Democrats who run Washington to get serious about the spending cuts and entitlement reforms needed to address our debt and resolve the fiscal cliff. Following are Speaker Boehner's remarks:
"As you know, the House did not take up the tax bill last night because we didn't have the votes to pass it. It's not the outcome that I wanted, but that was the will of the House.
"So, unless the President and Congress take action, tax rates will go up on every American taxpayer and devastating defense cuts will go into effect in ten days.
"The House has already passed bills addressing the fiscal cliff. We passed a bill replacing the president's sequester with responsible spending cuts and did it last May. We passed a bill to stop all the tax hikes on the American people scheduled to take effect January 1, and we did that on August 1. And we've proposed plans over and over again that Democrats used to support, but now they won't.
"I don't want taxes to go up. Republicans don't want taxes to go up. But we only run the House, the Democrats continue to run Washington.
"What the president has proposed so far simply won't do anything to solve our spending problem. He wants more spending and more tax hikes that will hurt our economy. And he simply won't deal honestly with entitlement reform and the big issues that are facing our country.
"We need significant spending cuts and real tax reform to address our long-term debt problem and pave the way for long-term growth and real growth in jobs in our country.
"We'll continue to work with our colleagues in the House and the Senate on a plan that protects families and small businesses from the fiscal cliff."