Boehner calls Democratic delay on tax vote ‘irresponsible’

Rachel Rose Hartman
John Boehner speaks at a press conference.
John Boehner speaks at a press conference.

Republican House Leader John Boehner said on Fox News Sunday that the Democrats' decision to delay a vote on the Bush tax cuts is "irresponsible" because it extends economic uncertainty.

If the House recesses this week without voting on the cuts, "it will be the most irresponsible thing I've seen since I've been in Washington-- and I've been here a while," the Ohio congressman told host Chris Wallace.

The office of Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid last week indicated that the planned vote on whether to extend the cuts will no longer be held prior to the Nov. 2 elections. Democrats said there was a lack of GOP support for their plan to allow tax cuts for the wealthy to expire and extend cuts for the middle class.

Republican Rep. Kevin McCarthy of California, appearing with Boehner on Fox News, suggested Republicans had the support of 37 Democrats for extending tax cuts for the wealthy.

"The Democrats have failed to lead on this," McCarthy said. "It's keeping capital on the sidelines."

Boehner hit out for Democrats for what he believes are misplaced priorities. "They've got time to bring a comedian to Washington, D.C. but they don't have time to eliminate uncertainty by extending tax cuts," Boehner said, referring to Comedy Central host Stephen Colbert's testimony on Capitol Hill Friday.

(Photo: AP/Evan Vucci)