‘No deal’ on debt ceiling as week comes to a close

Chris Moody
July 22, 2011

After several news outlets reported this week that House Speaker John Boehner and President Obama were nearing a deal to raise the nation's debt ceiling, today Boehner emphasized that they weren't even close.

"There is no deal," Boehner said Friday morning. "There is no agreement in private."

Instead of unveiling further details of his closed-door talks with President Obama, Boehner touted the Republican "Cut, Cap and Balance" plan the House passed earlier this week—and that the Senate rejected just moments after his news conference.

Despite Boehner's denials of a deal, early reports of a possible agreement sent lawmakers of all stripes into a near frenzy this week.

"I'm the Senate Majority Leader. Why don't I know about this deal?" Nevada Sen. Harry Reid reportedly demanded of White House budget director Jack Lew.

Reports leaked from the meetings between Boehner and Obama indicating the $3 trillion deficit-reduction plan would include changes in the way the government pays for Medicare and Social Security (angering Democrats), and an overhaul of the tax code that would raise government revenues (angering Republicans).

Boehner told GOP lawmakers in a closed-door meeting Friday morning that they must pass legislation to raise the debt ceiling by Wednesday, Politico reported.

The speaker and the president will continue their negotiations.