House Republicans say they're willing to negotiate with Democrats this afternoon -- but they will need additional free-market reforms in any bill passed.
Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) bridled when reporters asked about charges he had ambushed the White House and Democrats by dropping a new proposal on them at yesterday's meeting.
"I don't know what games were being played at the White House yesterday to gang up on Boehner, but if they thought they were rolling me, they are kidding themselves," he said.
Rep. Roy Blunt, who's the GOP's House negotiator, offered a thorny olive branch:
"Clearly, the Democrats have a majority in both houses of Congress. If they want to do this by themselves, they can do this by themselves in a minute...if they want to do this with us, we're prepared to have that negotiation."
with Dan Reilly and Patrick O'Connor