Republicans are prepared to let the automatic cuts go forward even if Democrats don’t agree to restructure them to fall less heavily on defense, said Representative Tom Cole, an Oklahoma Republican.
“We hope we can negotiate something different but we would let them go ahead and happen,” Cole said in an interview yesterday.
After dealing with the automatic cuts, the House is expected to take up its budget resolution and then turn to a bill to fund the government through Sept. 30, according to Representative John Fleming, a Louisiana Republican. The government is being funded through a stopgap measure that expires March 27.
Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin said earlier today that Republicans want to force “a big down payment on the debt crisis” during the debate on spending cuts and extending the government’s borrowing authority.
“We have to set our expectations accordingly” and “fight for those things” Republicans stand for “in a realistic way,” Ryan the Republican vice presidential nominee last year, said at a breakfast sponsored by the Wall Street Journal. “Our job as we see it is to get spending under control, to get some entitlement reforms” and “make sure we don’t have a debt crisis,” he said.