"There should be real structural reforms to our entitlement programs and there will be no tax increases," he said. Boehner said that in his view allowing the Bush tax cuts to expire would be raising taxes. "I've never voted to raise taxes and I don't intend to," Boehner said, effectively ruling out any possibility of a balanced approach to deficit reduction.
Boehner also suggested that House Republicans may allow the United States to go into default if President Obama and Senate Democrats do not accept their plan to slash spending. "If we're going to avoid default and prevent a downgrade of our credit rating," he said, then Obama "needs to step up and work with us on the spending cuts and reforms that the American people are demanding."
Pressed on whether Boehner thought default was a possibility, he would only say that he hoped Congress would avoid default. "Congress must act before August 2 and I hope that we're prepared to do that."