House Speaker Suggests Higher-Level Deficit Talks

By DAVID ESPO | June 1, 2011 | 5:59 PM EDT

WASHINGTON (AP) — House Speaker John Boehner says it's time for him and President Barack Obama to take a personal role in deficit-reduction talks that are linked to the administration's request for an increase in the nation's debt limit.

The Ohio Republican says the deficit talks led by Vice President Joe Biden are making marginal progress. But he adds that at the rate they are moving, Congress and the White House will be up against the Aug. 2 deadline the Treasury Department has set for a debt limit increase.

To move things along, Boehner says the president could become engaged, and he adds that he personally is ready.

Boehner spoke to reporters Wednesday in his Capitol office several hours after leading the House GOP rank and file to a meeting with Obama.