GOP Backs Away From Budget Compromise Reports

Eric Cantor told Washington Post deal was unlikely to include Medicare

By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff

Posted May 5, 2011 12:02 PM CDT

(Newser) – Eric Cantor moved quickly last night to dispel reports that he was aiming for a bipartisan budget compromise. With talks with the Democrats and the White House beginning today, the Washington Post had posted a story headlined “Medicare Dropped From GOP Budget Proposal,” in which Cantor was quoted as saying that Republicans probably wouldn’t be able to turn Medicare into a voucher program, as called for in the Paul Ryan budget.

But a Cantor spokesman swiftly put the kibosh on that notion. “Eric made very clear that our position is the Ryan budget,” he said, according to the Huffington Post. Asked if that meant he’d be pushing for the Medicare voucher program, he replied, “The starting point is the Ryan budget, period.” The Washington Post soon changed its headline to “Republicans Offer to Seek Common Ground with Democrats,” though the story still says Cantor will focus on spending cuts Democrats might agree with, rather than Medicare.

House Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Va., left, accompanied by House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy of Calif., speaks to the reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Tuesday, May 3, 2011.   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor of Va., center, accompanied by fellow House Republican leaders, meets with reporters on Capitol Hill, May 3, 2011.   (AP Photo/Jacquelyn Martin)
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