House Speaker John Boehner
WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (CBS NEWS) -- Seeking to gain the upper
hand early in debt limit negotiations, House Republicans announced
Friday they will take up a roughly three-month debt limit hike next
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., announced
the decision in a statement following a three-day GOP conference
retreat at a resort in Williamsburg, Va.
Cantor said the
three-month extension would give the Senate and House enough time to
pass a budget and that "if the Senate or House fails to pass a budget in
that time, Members of Congress will not be paid by the American people
for failing to do their job."
Treasury Secretary Timothy
Geithner has informed Congress that the United States is expected to hit
its current debt limit of $16.4 trillion by mid-February or March.
leaders worked with members over the three-day retreat to try to build
consensus among the GOP conference in order to avoid the bloody battle
in 2011 that occurred over raising the country's borrowing authority to
cover its debts and the end of year fight over the "fiscal cliff" that
revealed deep divisions among Republicans. Adding demands that the
Senate pass a budget to increase the debt limit sweetens the pot for a
conference frustrated by repeated budget and spending deals that don't
cut spending as much as they'd like.
have failed to pass a budget since April of 2009. Republicans want them
to put pen to paper and show how they would address the debt and deficit
A GOP leadership aide said the debt limit increase
would be one package requiring both chambers to pass a budget, but it
would not include spending cuts.
Cantor added that future
congressional pay would be contingent on the Senate passing a budget;
if House members pass a budget, as they plan to do, they would receive
their pay. House and Senate members make $174,000 per year.
the Senate or House fails to pass a budget in that time, Members of
Congress will not be paid by the American people for failing to do their
job," Candor said. "No budget, no pay," he added.
House press secretary Jay Carney said in a statement, "The President has
made clear that Congress has only two options: pay the bills they have
racked up, or fail to do so and put our nation into default. We are
encouraged that there are signs that Congressional Republicans may back
off their insistence on holding our economy hostage to extract drastic
cuts in Medicare, education and programs middle class families depend
on. Congress must pay its bills and pass a clean debt limit increase
without further delay. And as he has said, the President remains
committed to further reducing the deficit in a balanced way."
Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., released a statement responding to
the plan to extend the debt limit, but did not mention the conditions,
so an extension of the debt limit is not yet a done deal.
the House can pass a clean debt ceiling increase to avoid default and
allow the United States to meet its existing obligations, we will be
happy to consider it," Reid said.
According to excerpts
released of remarks by House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, to his
conference on the closing day, he took a swipe at the Senate record on
"The Democratic-controlled Senate has failed
to pass a budget for four years. That is a shameful run that needs to
end this year."