Coburn Bets a ‘Porterhouse Steak’ Obama Will Sign ‘Cut, Cap, and Balance’ Bill

By Nicholas Ballasy | July 21, 2011 | 3:17 PM EDT

( – Despite President Barack Obama’s vow to veto the Cut, Cap and Balance bill passed by the House of Representatives, Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.) said he would bet a “Porterhouse steak” that the president would sign the legislation if it arrived at his desk.

“It doesn’t matter what the polls are,” Coburn told reporters at the Capitol on Thursday. “We’ve got to fix our country, and this is the only viable plan right now that will do that. And I will bet you a Porterhouse steak that if it lands on his desk, he’ll sign this puppy.”

White House Press Secretary Jay Carney responded to Coburn’s bet.

Sen. Tom Coburn (R-Okla.)

"I have a feeling we're going to hear this exchange on the radio,” said Carney.  “But, we would take that bet and I would refrain from heading to the Safeway to buy A1 because the president has very clearly vowed to veto a bill, if such a bill were to arrive on his desk -- because it is a draconian measure that, in terms of its impact on dramatic cuts on Social Security [and] Medicare would make the Ryan plan pale in comparison.”

If passed, the Cut, Cap, and Balance Act would allow the states to vote on a constitutional amendment requiring Congress to pass a balanced budget each fiscal year.

“And what the president is asking us to do is give up the best opportunity I’ve seen in my political lifetime to stop the country from becoming Greece,” said Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.).

“The reason he doesn’t want a balanced budget amendment in the Constitution is because that’s the end of perpetual expansion of the federal government, and that’s the heart of the matter. And the reason we’re willing to compromise is because that’s what made America great,” said Graham.

The Republican proposal would cut spending, cap the growth in future spending, and allow a vote on a constitutional amendment – to be sent to the states for ratification -- requiring a balanced federal budget. The constitutional amendment – though widely supported by 72 percent of the public – requires a two-thirds vote in both chambers of Congress to pass, then ratification by three-fourths of the states.