John Boehner: Obama Relationship Has Become 'Frosty'
WASHINGTON -- The relationship between House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and President Barack Obama has been "frosty" over the past two weeks, the speaker said on Sunday, despite their past work together on decreasing the deficit.
"The president and I have a pretty good relationship," he said on ABC's "This Week." "It's been a little frosty over the last two weeks. But we've got a pretty good relationship. And I've told the president, and I'm the most straight-up transparent person in this town, that I would never mislead him, that my word is my bond."
"Doesn't mean that we always agree," he added.
Boehner and the president worked together this summer on a grand compromise to cut the deficit, which would have included major spending cuts and some revenue increases. Those talks broke down, and now a congressional "super committee" is working on a plan that will likely make only a fraction of those cuts.
Boehner has said repeatedly that failing to come to an agreement with the president is one of his biggest regrets, a statement he repeated on "This Week." He said he does not think it would be easy for the two to come together again for a major deal on the deficit, saying, "It's hard to put Humpty Dumpty back together again."
"I really thought the president and I could come to an agreement," he said. "I thought that for the good of the country he and I could have solved this problem."
Still, the speaker said he strongly supports the effort by the super committee to cut at least $1.2 trillion from the deficit, which he said "has to work." The group -- 12 members representing each party and chamber -- has been tasked with finding sufficient cuts by a Nov. 23 deadline, but remains gridlocked.
He said reports of the joint committee's lack of progress do not necessarily mean it will fail.
"I wouldn't describe it as an impasse," he said. "This is hard. If it was easy, the president and I could have solved it. If it was easy, congresses over the last 20 years would have solved it."
Despite his support for compromise, Boehner doubled down on his criticism of Obama's "class warfare" message, saying the prospects for a deal are harmed by the president's call for additional taxes on the wealthy.
"We are not going to engage in class warfare," he said. "The president's out there doing it every day, and I frankly think it's unfortunate."