"Well, the plan in total was one that was met with a lot of resistance, frankly, on both sides of the aisle when the president unveiled it in September," Cantor said. "And so, when the president spoke that night, I said, let's work together, stop the all-or-nothing approach. We're not going to be for tax increases on small businesses. He knows that."
One of the most hotly debated aspects of the plan is the proposed millionaire surtax, called the Buffett Rule, after billionaire Warren Buffett who said the wealthy should be taxed more. The plan would seek a new tax base rate to ensure that millionaires pay at least the same percentage as middle income Americans.
The plan faces tough opposition among conservatives, and Cantor said it disenfranchises the wealthy.
"I mean, these are policies that they put into place and there's a lot that can be done here in this town to turn the economy around, and promote against income mobility and not go in and excoriate some who have been successful," he said. "We want success for everybody."
But Axelrod said the average American does not share the Republicans' opposition to the plan.
"The American people strongly support it. And the American people are going to be heard on this legislation," he said. "I think so many Americans are just sitting there saying, 'Act,' to Congress. 'Do something. Stop playing games.'"