CBS’s Cordes to Boehner: ‘How Can You Even Allow These Soldiers to Wonder Whether They're Going to Get Paid?’
On Saturday’s CBS Evening News, correspondent Nancy Cordes seemed to put the burden on Republicans of causing U.S. troops to wonder if they will be paid on time during the budget battle, as a clip of her was shown asked House Speaker John Boehner, "How can you even allow these soldiers to wonder whether they're going to get paid?"
Cordes got to the subject after showing a clip of an unidentified male member of the House of Representatives declaring, "This process has become a joke. It is a disgrace. It's an insult to the American people." The CBS correspondent then added, "And to the troops." After relaying that some troops had raised concerns with Joint Chiefs Chairman Mike Mullen, Cordes showed the clip of herself with Speaker Boehner.
The CBS correspondent did not show a clip of any Democrats being asked a similar question.
Below is a transcript of the report from the Saturday, July 30, CBS Evening News, with critical portions in bold:
RUSS MITCHELL: And good evening. With less than 72 hours to go before the federal government potentially runs out of money to pay its bills, there is now word that talks to cut a deal have gone to a new level, this after the Senate late last night shot down a Republican proposal from the House, and the House today said no to a Democratic plan from the Senate. Congressional correspondent Nancy Cordes is on Capitol Hill with the very latest. Nancy, good evening.
NANCY CORDES: Good evening to you, Russ. And things have taken a strange turn here this evening. Republican leaders insist that an agreement is close at hand, but Democrats say that's a ruse. What we do know for certain is that Republican leaders have resumed talks in some form with the White House.
MITCH MCCONNELL, SENATE MINORITY LEADER: We are now fully engaged, the Speaker and I, with the one person in America out of 307 million people who can sign a bill into law. I'm confident and optimistic that we're going to get an agreement in the very near future and resolve this crisis in the best interests of the American people.
CORDES: But Democratic Senate Leader Harry Reid disputed that a short while later.
HARRY REID, SENATE MAJORITY LEADER: Not true. I just spent two hours with the President and Vice President and Leader Pelosi, and it's fair for me to say that the engagement there is not in any meaningful way.
CORDES: The two sides have been locked in a seemingly endless cycle of voting down whatever plan the other party puts forward.
STENY HOYER, HOUSE MINORITY WHIP: The people aren't looking to us for what we can stop. They're looking to us for what we can do.
CORDES: The partisan sniping continued today.
REP. DAVID DREIER (R-CA): The action that we're about to take here today is going to help with the process of seeing senator McConnell and Senator Reid work together. Why? Because-
REP. SANDER LEVIN (D-MI): I'm going to take back my time, Mr. Dreier. That is pernicious nonsense!
CORDES: Baron's newspaper dubbed it a "stupid fight."
UNIDENTIFIED MALE MEMBER OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES: This process has become a joke. It is a disgrace. It's an insult to the American people.
CORDES: And to the troops, some of whom asked the Chairman of Joint Chiefs of Staff, as he traveled through Afghanistan, whether they will still get paid if the U.S. coffers run dry. He told them, "I honestly can't answer that." How can you even allow these soldiers to wonder whether they're going to get paid?
JOHN BOEHNER, HOUSE SPEAKER: I think Senator McConnell and I are both confident that we're going to be able to come to some agreement with the White House and end this impasse.
CORDES: But, again, Democratic leaders dispute that, and, in fact, when House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi was returning from the White House this evening, we asked her what she thought of McConnell's assertion that they were close to a deal, and she said to us, "I don't even know what you're talking about. " Russ?