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Republicans Begin To Lay Out Strategy For Next Congress

John Boehner

House speaker-in-waiting Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio, talks to the media, after the elections, on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, Nov. 3, 2010.  Alex Brandon/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Alex Brandon/AP

The newly empowered Republican leadership just held a press conference on Capitol Hill to lay out some of what they are planning in the coming days. Speaker of the House-in-waiting John Boehner, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, and Mississippi Governor Haley Barbour were all at the podium.

If they had one refrain it was their pledge to "listen to the American people." All three men repeated the mantra over and over again. That and being humbled. They also repeated the phrase "smaller, less costly and more accountable government" as being what the American people want.

When it came to specifics they had a couple that seem clear. Boehner said, "We continue to believe extending current tax rates for all Americans is the right policy." He was referring to the Bush-era tax cuts, which are set to expire at the end of the year.  On spending he said he believes that 2008 levels of spending is "a responsible way forward." And on repealing the Health Care bill, he sounded fairly clear on that, "I believe that the health care bill will kill jobs in America, ruin the best health care system in the world and bankrupt our country." So, we can see that on the agenda.

Mr. Boehner also said there would be stronger congressional oversight of the executive branch, singling out the financial system reforms that recently passed as one area he thought there should be robust oversight as the regulations are written.

But there were also some noises that this was just the beginning. Senator McConnell said quite clearly that yesterday's election was only the beginning of the process, and that "more change can happen in 2012."

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