Boehner on CNN: House Focusing on Jobs, POTUS Picking Fake Fights & Going After Straw Men

On CNN’s State of the Union with Candy Crowley, Speaker John Boehner noted that while the House is working to address high gas prices and stop excessive regulations that hurt job growth, President Obama is “diminishing the presidency” by “picking fake fights” and “going after straw men.” Boehner highlighted the House vote to extend current student loan rates by cutting a slush fund from ObamaCare – a slush fund Democrats (including the president) previously supported cutting and a law that’s making it harder for small businesses to hire new workers. Below is video and key excerpts from the interview:

On the American People Still Asking, “Where Are the Jobs?”:

“The American people are still asking the question, ‘where are the jobs?’ And it’s clear this president’s economic policies have failed.  As a result, he’s turned to the politics of envy and division. The way we help the middle class is we get our economy going again. We develop more American oil and gas so that their gas prices, which have doubled under President Obama are, again, reasonable. How do we do that? We stop the regulatory juggernaut that's going on downtown here in Washington. Every agency of the federal government scaring every employer to dickens and they're afraid to invest. … This election is going to be about the president’s economic policies. They’ve failed.”

On President Obama “Diminishing the Presidency By Picking Fake Fights, Going After Straw Men”:

“[H]e’s diminishing the presidency by picking fake fights, going after straw men every day.  You know, we had the Buffett Rule.  You know, went on for months, even the president admitted it was a gimmick.  Then we have the Rose Garden ceremony talking about manipulation in the oil markets without one shred of evidence.  And he has an entire administration to go after speculation or manipulation in the oil markets.  And then they pick this student loan fight where there is no fight.  And the point I’ve been trying to make here in the last couple of weeks is that the president’s bigger than this.  The presidency is important.  America has big challenges.  Big fiscal challenges, and we’ve got big challenges with our economy and the president ought to be working with Democrats and Republicans on Capitol Hill to address the big issues that affect the American people.” 

On Student Loans, & the President “Picking a Fight Where One Doesn’t Exist”:

“This problem was created by a Democrat Congress in 2007, and Democrats and Republicans, for months, have been working together trying to figure out a way to resolve the problem. And for the president to politicize this for his own reelection is picking a fight where one doesn’t exist. … Listen, what we’re trying to do here is to deal with this problem in a responsible way. Democrats and Republicans have been working together to get this resolved and I believe that we will. If the Senate wants to do a different pay-for, that will be up to them. But, we will have this issue resolved.”

On Democrats Supporting Cuts to ObamaCare Slush Fund in the Past:

“Well, then why did his budget director and the president put in their budget reductions in spending in this program?  Why did the president sign into law the payroll tax credit that included $4 billion dollars worth of reductions in this same program? … The same fund.”

On Democrats’ Political “War on Women” Rhetoric:

“That is just nonsense. There is no women’s health issue here. … I’ll guarantee you they have not spent a dime out of this fund dealing with anything to do with women’s health. … The president’s own budget called for reductions in spending in this fund, in this prevention fund. So, why would they have done that if it wasn’t available to use as an offset to make sure the student loan interest rates don’t go up?”

On Keeping the Pledge to America to Listen to the American People & Reform Congress:

“No earmarks, who can imagine?  You know, we’ve been through 16 months now, not one earmark.  It’s made my job a lot more difficult, in terms of how to pass important legislation, because there’s no grease, I’ve got no grease.  So, no earmarks.  A more open process, allowing Democrats and Republicans to represent their constituency, to bring their ideas onto the floor.  We’re making real progress.  One of my major goals is to rebuild this institution.  If we’re serious about tackling America’s big problems, you’ve got to have an institution strong enough to be able to do that.  Having watched what’s happened here in this institution over the 21 years that I’ve been here, we’ve made positive steps in the right direction.  Both Democrats and Republicans are very happy about the progress we’ve made.  They want more and so do I.”