Republicans gave no ground Sunday to President Obama’s demand for near-unilateral power to increase the debt ceiling, with one influential senator predicting the party will once again use the debt-ceiling vote to extract trillions in spending cuts.

The senator, Tennessee’s Bob Corker, broke with some in his party Sunday by urging Republicans to drop their opposition to tax hikes on the wealthiest 2 percent. Corker, though, explained that he only thinks Republicans should cave to Obama on tax hikes because then they can focus on winning entitlement cuts as part of the debt-ceiling negotiations.

“Republicans know that they have the debt ceiling that’s coming up right around the corner, and the leverage is going to shift, as soon as we get beyond this issue,” Corker said on “Fox News Sunday.”

“The leverage is going to shift to our side, where hopefully we’ll do the same thing we did last time.”

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