By Alicia M. Cohn - 06/24/11 10:12 PM EDT
The No. 3 Republican leader in the House took President Obama to task Friday, claiming he should put the golf clubs down and get directly involved in the budget talks with Congress.
"He's got to get off the golf course and he's got to get engaged," Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) said.
Although he referred to the president's golf game, McCarthy did not address the highly publicized golf game Obama recently played with House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio), the GOP leader with whom Obama is expected to soon meet to deal with the budget deficit and debt-limit crises.
The GOP's third most powerful congressman accused Obama of staying on the sidelines during the budget deficit talks lead by Vice President Joe Biden.
"Look, I think we can get to the point where we solve this problem," McCarthy said on Bloomberg TV's Political Capital with Al Hunt. "It is never going to happen if the talks are still all going to be Biden."
McCarthy shied away from the idea of a short-term solution or a temporary debt ceiling increase in order to buy time on reaching an agreement on entitlement reforms. Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) suggested earlier this week that a short-term increase might be necessary.
The deficit reduction talks broke down earlier this week when House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) and Senate Minority Whip Jon Kyl (R-Ariz.) pulled out of negotiations, citing Democratic demands for tax increases as part of the deficit solution.
More from The Hill on budget negotiations:
- Obama looks to break debt impasse
- Speaker Boehner: Debt-ceiling deal with tax increases ‘cannot pass’ the House
- Taxes reason Cantor left talks, not disagreements on Pentagon spending