Brushing aside criticism that House Speaker John Boehner is letting the tea party movement run his caucus, freshman New York Republican Rep. Tom Reed told The Daily Caller that the Republicans are functioning “like a true conference” while their Democratic critics, like Sen. Chuck Schumer, are “old school” and only want to “control” how their members operate.
As an alternative to the two-month payroll tax cut extension passed by the Senate, Reed vowed to stay in Washington, D.C. until Congress passes a full year extension, which he called a “long-term solution.” If Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid does not come back to the Capitol, Reed said, “shame on him.”
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TheDC asked Reed if he would be willing to allow the payroll tax cut to expire Dec. 31 instead of supporting the two-month extension passed by the Senate.
“We’re going to stay here until it gets done. I think we’re going to get a long-term solution put on the floor and voted out in a way that makes sure that doesn’t happen. … It all depends on what the Senate and Senate leadership will do. If Harry Reid sticks true to his sentiment that he’s not coming back, well, then, shame on him but we’ll be here and we’ll be getting the work done,” he said.
During a Monday interview on extending the expiring payroll tax cut and unemployment benefits, Schumer said of Boehner, “He’s afraid of the 80 tea party, way-out-there people in his caucus. He’s letting them run the caucus, run his House.”
In response, Reed told TheDC, “Schumer appears to be engaging in old school politics in the Senate in that the leadership has to control how the Senate operates and I think you’re seeing that demonstrated with Harry Reid saying we’re out of here and we’re not going back.”
He continued, “How we’re operating in the House is we’re operating like a true conference. I have a great deal of respect for Speaker Boehner, Leader Cantor, Whip McCarthy because you know what they do? They actually listen to us, they actually talk with us, they look for our input and this is how a conference should operate. What Senator Schumer is doing is causing us to be united as one force even more so than we were before.”