Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell has extended an olive branch to President Barack Obama reaching out to him to work on entitlement reform, The Hill
The move, on the eve of Obama’s second inauguration, follows four years of cool relations between the two.
“Given the serious nature of the challenge,’’ McConnell writes in an opinion piece in The Hill, “I hope the president uses his inaugural address to acknowledge both the seriousness of the debt crisis and lays out ways, working with both parties in Congress, to get our profligate spending under control.”
The presidential address should focus on “the massive federal debt that is hanging over the heads of our children and grandchildren,” according to McConnell.
The Hill says McConnell made the same offer four years ago “but that was soon forgotten amid acrimony over the economic stimulus package and healthcare reform.’’
Sources close to McConnell tell The Hill he wants Obama and his advisers to meet with Republican and Democratic leaders and negotiate a compromise before the next fiscal deadline.
“With taxes off the table, the only way to achieve a ‘balanced plan’ is to focus on the spending side of the equation, particularly — as the president pointed out — healthcare entitlement programs,” he wrote in the op-ed piece.
“Taxes simply can’t go high enough to keep pace with the amount of money we’re projected to spend on them without crushing our economy.”
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