GOP leader John Boehner (Ohio) said voters had rejected President Obama's agenda on Tuesday, and claimed a mandate to cut spending.
Boehner, the likely Speaker of the House next year, made clear that the new Republican majority in the House intended to follow-through on its promises to cut government spending and try to repeal healthcare reform.
"The American people spoke, and I think it's pretty clear the Obama/Pelosi agenda is being rejected by the American people," Boehner said Wednesday during a short media appearance at the Capitol. "I think it's a mandate for Washington to reduce the size of government and continue our fight for a smaller and less costly and more accountable government."
Republicans are huddling at the Capitol on Wednesday to begin efforts to govern next year in the House, and make their increased presence known in the Senate. Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) will hold a press conference at 11:30 this morning.
Boehner and Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.), the minority whip who will likely ascend to majority leader in the House, signaled that they intended to make platform items from the campaign some of their first priorities in the new House.
"The American people are concerned about the government takeover of healthcare," Boehner said. "I think it's important for us to lay the groundwork before we begin to repeal of this monstrosity and replace it with commonsense reforms."
Boehner refused to elaborate on what he meant by “lay the groundwork” for healthcare repeal. Responding to a question about the GOP’s agenda, Boehner told reporters crowded into his Capitol office suite that “we'll make those decisions in the months ahead.”
"The first order of business has got to be creating jobs," Cantor said.
—Molly Hooper contributed to this report.