Boehner Forgives 12 GOP Defectors

'I don't hold grudges,' says speaker

By John Johnson,  Newser Staff

Posted Jan 5, 2013 11:24 AM CST

(Newser) – The dozen Republican members of Congress who gave John Boehner a public rebuke this week don't have to worry about payback, he says. "I'm not a retribution kind of guy," he told a closed-door conference meeting yesterday, reports the Hill. "I don't hold grudges." Boehner got re-elected to a second term as speaker, but the vote was unusually close thanks to the largely conservative gang of 12 who either voted for someone else or abstained.

Boehner will need all the unity he can get for his next task—getting a bill passed that raises the debt ceiling. He told Republicans that he will insist any such action be paired with spending cuts, a move he says the public supports. But President Obama reiterated today in his weekly address that Congress must raise the ceiling without negotiations, reports AP. It's a "dangerous game," he said. "If Congress refuses to give the United States the ability to pay its bills on time, the consequences for the entire global economy could be catastrophic."

Speaker of the House John Boehner.
Speaker of the House John Boehner.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)
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