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Boehner: House GOP 'alternative' party

CAMBRIDGE, Md. — House Republicans arrived at their retreat here in search of an agenda for 2014, hoping to show voters that they are, in the words of Speaker John Boehner, the “alternative party,” not simply the opposition to President Obama.

In-between motivational speeches and TED talk-style presentations at a resort along the banks of the frozen Chesapeake Bay, GOP lawmakers will try to hatch plans on immigration, the debt ceiling and healthcare.

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But whether they can return to the Capitol with a consensus on those issues is the big question of the three-day conference.

“I think in order to maximize this year, it’s important that we show the American people that we’re not just the opposition party, we’re actually the alternative party,” Boehner (R-Ohio), dressed casually in an orange sweater, told reporters Thursday morning.

“Republicans have to do more to talk about the better solutions that we think we have that will help the American people grow their wages, have opportunities to have a better job and clearly have a better shot at the American dream.”

None of the party discussions are open to the press. GOP leaders briefed a roomful of reporters who were sequestered in a restaurant on the other side of the bay-side Hyatt resort where lawmakers were meeting.

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