Rivalry

Boehner-Cantor Feud Affecting Debt Talks

Besides the squabbling between Republicans and Democrats in the debt talks, it appears there’s another feud in the negotiations: one between House Speaker John Boehner and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor. The two Republican leaders are sharply divided over President Obama’s call for a massive deficit-reduction package, with Boehner supporting a large package and Cantor opposed. “I don’t think Boehner would want to serve in a foxhole anytime with Eric Cantor,” said one Republican strategist who asked not to be identified. As House speaker, Boehner is free to pursue what action he likes, but he risks alienating Cantor, who has been on a quick ascent to a leadership role—especially among the new class in Washington. But GOP divisions could put the party in the same place they were in 1994, when Newt Gringrich couldn’t control the rebel factions of the party.