WASHINGTON, D.C. ó House Speaker John Boehner said Republicans want to cooperate with President Barack Obama on reducing federal deficits, but not by raising income tax rates.
Boehner spoke soon after Obama told reporters the GOP-run House should let taxes rise on the richest Americans. Boehner, an Ohio Republican, said that would hurt job creation.
The speaker said there has been a spirit of cooperation between congressional Republicans and the White House. He said he is optimistic about talks beginning Friday between the White House and congressional leaders about averting the fiscal cliff Ė tax increases and spending cuts occurring automatically in January unless lawmakers reach a compromise to avert them.
Obama campaigned for re-election on boosting taxes on the wealthy, but said Wednesday he could compromise on how to do that.
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