House Speaker John Boehner (R., Ohio) accused the Obama administration of "trying to play games with the American people" on the sequester Tuesday, in response to a CBS report that U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement was forced to release illegal immigrants because of the pending budget cuts.
This is not leadership, Boehner said.
"This is very hard for me to believe that they can't find cuts elsewhere in their agency," he said. "I frankly think this is outrageous, and I'm looking for more facts, but I can't believe that they can't find the kind of savings they need out of that department short of letting criminals go free."
CBS anchor Scott Pelley told Boehner he thought the Speaker was accusing the White House of fearmongering.
"Listen, they're out there making a lot of noise," Boehner said. "What they really ought to be doing is coming up to the Hill and working with the Senate Democrats to pass a bill that can replace the sequester and begin to deal with our long-term spending problem."
Pelley replayed the clip of Boehner from earlier Tuesday, when he stated that the House should not have to move a third bill to offset the sequester before the "Senate gets off their ass and begins to do something." He didn't shy away from that remark or that revenue increases would not be part of any deal.
"The president got his tax hikes in January," Boehner said. "The federal government will have more revenue this year than any year in our history. It's time to tackle spending. Period."