GOP accuses Dem leaders of contradictions in healthcare defense

Republicans pounced on remarks made by House Minority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) Thursday evening, accusing the second-highest House Democrat of contradicting key claims about his own party's healthcare bill.

Hoyer, speaking on Fox News about the Democratic proposal, said the bill would reduce costs in the long run, and would hopefully keep tax rates under a preferred maximum of 50 percent for high earners.

"The bottom line is that we will have to bring costs down," Hoyer said on costs. "That will be our top objective."

Hoyer later said that tax rates "need to be below 50 percent" for the highest earners, adding a rate beyond that is a "cause for concern."

The GOP countered Hoyer's interview quickly on Thursday, pointing to Congressional Budget Office (CBO) Director Douglas Elmendorf's testimony today that the healthcare bill before the House would exacerbate the nation's long-term fiscal situation.

They also highlighted an analysis by minority Republicans on the House Ways and Means Committee that asserted, under the "surtax" included in the healthcare bill, the highest income tax rate would exceed 50 percent in 39 states.

"House Democrats know the American people want to lower health care costs. Sadly, that's not just what their bill does," said Michael Steel, a spokesman for House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio). "When will they stop trying to defend the indefensible and work with Republicans to enact real health care reform?"

Watch a video of Hoyer's interview below: