Tough negotiations would then follow on the chief sticking point of the battle: whose taxes should go up. Democrats want them to go up for those making $250,000 or more. Discussions have involved the possibility of raising that figure to a $400,000 threshold, along with a push to keep estate taxes low; Democrats have said they might be open to one such scenario, but not both.
But many Republicans have opposed any increase in tax rates. House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, suffered a political setback by offering a compromise -- a $1 million threshold for the higher rates to kick in -- that his GOP House colleagues refused to support.
Extending unemployment insurance was on the table in Senate negotiations under way Sunday, and the estate tax was under debate, according to a source familiar with the talks.
Negotiators worked late Saturday night, but not through the night, the source said.
Republicans argued Sunday that the resistance to Obama's plan is based on his refusal to adequately limit spending.
"The president is doing nothing about the addiction that his administration has to spending. He's the spender in chief," Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming said on CNN's "State of the Union."
Republican Rep. Darrell Issa of California echoed those remarks. "Even if you put back all the revenue you would get from those higher taxes, you still have a deficit. That's what we're trying to change," he said.
Obama rejected such complaints, telling NBC that he has cut more than a trillion dollars in spending. "I offered over $1 trillion in additional spending cuts so that we would have $2 of spending cuts for every $1 of increased revenue," he said on NBC.
The president also emphasized that he had campaigned on "a balanced approach" which would increase taxes on the wealthy -- and that the majority of Americans have made clear they support such a plan.
Sunday, December 30, 2012
Obama points out why the fiscal cliff needs to happen
He is blaming Republicans and demanding tax hikes while the press slobbers over him. But this is good politics on his part because 98% of Americans are not feeling the effects of these ineffective tax hikes on the rich. Its all about shielding the rubes from their own stupidity. The spending is out of control but the rubes don't care.