Boehner: Shutdown Won’t End Until Democrats Back Down

AP

Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) gave a rare interview to ABC’s “This Week” on the sixth day of the government shutdown, holding firm in refusing to end the logjam unless Democrats accede to policy reforms.

“It’s my way or the highway. That’s what he’s saying. Complete surrender and then we’ll talk to you,” he said Sunday, referring to President Barack Obama’s refusal to make concessions simply to keep the government open.

He repeatedly insisted the shutdown won’t end unless Obama and Senate Democrats back down, and repeatedly hammered Obamacare.

Boehner didn’t deny that he initially agreed to a “clean” continuing resolution with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) but said “I and my members decided the threat of Obamacare and what was happening was so important that it was time for us to take a stand.  And we took a stand.”

Boehner was also asked if the strategy to spur a shutdown over Obamacare was established by Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) against his wishes.

“I thought the fight would be over the debt ceiling,” he said. “But you know, working with my members, they decided, well, let’s do it now.  And the fact is, this fight was going to come, one way or the other.”

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Sahil Kapur is TPM's senior congressional reporter and Supreme Court correspondent. His articles have been published in the Huffington Post, The Guardian and The New Republic. Email him at sahil@talkingpointsmemo.com and follow him on Twitter at @sahilkapur.
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