Eric Cantor has confirmed that he and Paul Ryan talked John Boehner out of accepting a “Grand Bargain” with Obama in 2011. It was this rejection that led to the sequester.
In an interview with Ryan Lizza, House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) confirmed that he and Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) talked Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) out of accepting a “Grand Bargain” with President Obama.
Transcript from The New Yorker,
LIZZA: There’s sort of a final meeting with Paul Ryan and you and Boehner where it seems like there’s a final sort of discussion about whether this offer needs to be rejected or not. The way it seems to be reported is—it seems like Boehner wanted to do it, you and Ryan sort of talked him out of it. Is that—
CANTOR: I would say it’s a fair assessment, because, in the end, we felt that—well, let me back up, this is probably a longer answer. Yes, it’s probably an accurate conclusion.
Cantor confirmed what everyone who isn’t a Republican or Bob Woodward already knew. Republicans wanted a deal solely on their terms. House Republicans are directly responsible for the sequester, because they are the ones who walked away from the “Grand Bargain.” It has long been reported that Boehner wanted to do the deal, but he backed out at the last moment. Ryan and Cantor were always the prime suspects in the killing of the best shot at a compromise, and now we know that the suspicions were accurate.
In this context, it is doubly enraging to watch Paul Ryan blame Obama for the sequester. The president had a bargain almost completed, and Ryan helped kill it. It isn’t a coincidence that two individuals who have been huge fans of the sequester helped to kill a bargain.
The sequester doesn’t belong to President Obama. The sequester is the baby of Paul Ryan and Eric Cantor. As Cantor takes credit for the sequester, Virginia voters should keep in mind his role in costing his state hundreds of thousands of jobs. While analysts disagree on exactly how many jobs will be lost, Virginia is expected to be one of the three states most impacted by the sequester.
Eric Cantor may be proud of the damage his obstruction is about to inflict on the people of his state, but Virginians should be disgusted by Eric Cantor.