According to a senior White House official, President Obama on Thursday night was prepared to tell House Speaker John Boehner that in order to get support from congressional Democrats, he needed additional revenue -- $400 billion -- beyond he revenues that were being discussed.
The two men did not actually speak, but that was the White House message to the speaker's office.
The White House official says the president didn't hear back from the speaker, because Boehner didn't return the call.
The official adds the president's offer would have included flexibility over the number. "If you can't get to 400, let's talk," was Obama's message, the official says.
But, the official argues, both sides had already been going back and forth on revenues, cuts, and triggers -- refuting Boehner's charge that the president "moved the goal posts."
So that's the White House's perspective. Here's Boehner's: "Under the framework, a CEILING was offered by the White House that would generate $800 billion in new revenue over 10 years. This would be done through comprehensive tax reform that would clear out deductions, credits, and loopholes in the system – and spur economic growth," a Boehner official tells reporters.
"After the Gang of Six plan came out, the White House moved the goal posts and insisted on $400 billion more in higher taxes –- a 50% increase in revenue –- and wanted that to be the FLOOR instead of the ceiling," the official adds.