Here’s what was said at a recent press conference:
So I’m going to continue to talk to the President and the other leaders up in the Senate. But, ultimately, they’ve got to do their job. Right now their job is to make sure that middle-class taxes do not go up and that we have a balanced, responsible package of deficit reduction.
It is there for all to see. It is a deal that can get done. But it is not going to be—it cannot be done if every side wants 100 percent. And part of what voters were looking for is some compromise up here. That’s what folks want. They understand that they’re not going to get 100 percent of what they want. And for some reason, that message has not yet taken up at the White House or in the Senate.
And when you think about what we’ve gone through over the last couple of months—a devastating hurricane, and now one of the worst tragedies in our memory—the country deserves folks to be willing to compromise on behalf of the greater good, and not tangle themselves up in a whole bunch of ideological positions that don’t make much sense.
So I remain not only open to conversations, but I remain eager to get something done. I’d like to get it done before Christmas. There’s been a lot of posturing up at the White House and over in the Senate, instead of just going ahead and getting stuff done. And we’ve been wasting a lot of time. It is the right thing to do. I’m prepared to get it done. But they’re going to have to go ahead and make some adjustments.
Was that Speaker of the House John Boehnor (R, OH)? Not really. It was President Barack Obama, and he wasn’t talking about himself and his allies; he was disparaging Republican efforts to avert our fall over the cliff.