Saturday, July 23, 2011

Debt talks between Obama, House Speaker Boehner collapse



House Speaker John Boehner walked away from debt talks with President Barack Obama's administration Friday, raising the stakes in the country's ongoing effort to stave off national default.

"In the end, we couldn't connect. Not because of different personalities, but because of different visions for our country," Boehner wrote in a letter to his fellow Republicans.

The House speaker said that "a deal was never reached, and was never really close."

"For these reasons, I have decided to end discussions with the White House and begin conversations with the leaders of the Senate in an effort to find a path forward," he wrote.

Speaking to reporters soon after news of Boehner's decision broke, a visibly frustrated Obama said that he has told the Republican and Democratic leaders in Congress to come to the White House on Saturday morning to "explain to me how we are going to avoid default" on the nation's debt. Boehner told reporters at a news conference later he would attend that meeting. (more)