President Obama making the case Monday afternoon that if the nation crashes into the debt ceiling, people should blame the Republicans, not him.
FOX News Radio's Mike Majchrowitz reports from the White House:
The President says he's willing to talk to Republicans about spending cuts but not about raising the debt ceiling.
(Obama) "What I will not do is to have that negotiation with a gun at the head of the American people."
The President saying if Republicans don't agree to raise the debt ceiling, they will be responsible for the nation defaulting on its obligation and government services like social security and veterans benefits being delayed. House Speaker John Boehner says defaulting would be bad, but so too are the consequences of not dealing with the nation's ballooning debt.
At the White House, Mike Majchrowitz, FOX News Radio.
WATCH part of the President's press conference:
READ House Speaker John Boehner's response to President Obama's press conference:
"The American people do not support raising the debt ceiling without reducing government spending at the same time. The consequences of failing to increase the debt ceiling are real, but so too are the consequences of allowing our spending problem to go unresolved. Without meaningful action, the debt will continue to act as an anchor on our economy, costing American jobs and endangering our children's future. The House will do its job and pass responsible legislation that controls spending, meets our nation's obligations and keeps the government running, and we will insist that the Democratic majority in Washington do the same."
READ a statement from House Democratic Whip Steny H. Hoyer regarding President Obama's press conference:
"President Obama is right that there ought not be a debate over whether the United States should pay the bills it has already incurred. While the American people expect Democrats and Republicans to meet in good faith at the negotiating table to achieve a big and balanced solution to the challenge of deficit reduction, they will not tolerate any party playing partisan games with a possible default and further downgrade of our credit. America must live up to its obligations while seeking a more disciplined fiscal future. Democrats look forward to playing a positive role in this process in the weeks ahead."
READ a statement from Republican National Committee (RNC) Chairman Reince Priebus regarding President Obama's press conference:
"Today's press conference reveals just how little President Obama cares about deficit reduction. There is nothing 'responsible' about continuing to put trillions of dollars on the nation's credit card," said RNC Chairman Reince Priebus. "Instead of showing leadership, the president seems to believe he has no role in leading the country toward fiscal responsibility. Instead, he prefers to cast blame elsewhere. But he is the one who promised to cut the deficit in half in his first term and then presided over the first four $1 trillion deficits in American history, racking up more debt in one term than any president before him.
Republicans take our spending crisis seriously because it's a drag on our economy and a threat to our children's future. President Obama should tackle these issues head on, like a president, instead of running from the problem."