ABC News’ Sunlen Miller (@SunlenMiller) reports:
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., today said that Speaker of the House John Boehner’s plan is “dead on arrival” in the Senate and attempted to define what a vote for the House plan would be: a vote for the tea party.
“Speaker Boehner’s plan is not a compromise. It was written for the tea party, not the American people. Democrats will not vote for it. Democrats will not vote for it. Democrats will not vote for it. It’s dead on arrival in the Senate, if they get it out of the House,” Reid said following a meeting with his caucus today. “I hope my Republican colleagues will think long and hard about what direction they want to move. They can either support the tea party, that — and their plan, which has no chance of passing, or they can work with us to forge a responsible approach.”
The effort right now in the Senate, Reid said, is for Democrats to rally support with their Republican colleagues for the Senate plan.
“We decided that members of our caucus would start reaching out to our Republican colleagues to encourage them to support our plan. The Senate plan is a reasonable middle ground,” Reid said, “Even Grover Norquist gave his blessing to our plan today — opening the door, I hope, for Republicans to vote with us.”
And Reid suggested that the Gang of Six will be reaching out and perhaps influencing his plan as well as a way to pick up more votes.
“I’ve asked each one of them to reach out to their Republican colleagues. Is there any way that the Gang of Six stuff can be worked into this framework some way that will allow them to be more positive than what they have?”
The Majority Leader said he’s open to compromise but the Democrats will not compromise on the length of the extension of the debt ceiling, one of the key sticking points between the dueling plans.
“We are not going to have a short-term extension of this debt because it would mean that we would come back in early October and be right where we are again — the same, same deal.”
When asked, Reid said that he believes that Speaker Boehner would like to avoid default but noted that “he sure has a funny way of showing it.”