Fiscal cliff negotiations getting "tense" - 13 WTHR Indianapolis

Fiscal cliff negotiations getting "tense"

Posted: Updated:
President Obama wants the wealthiest Americans to pay more taxes. President Obama wants the wealthiest Americans to pay more taxes.
Republicans say it's a spending problem. Republicans say it's a spending problem.
WASHINGTON, DC -

No news is not necessarily good news when it comes to the fiscal cliff negotiations.

We're exactly one week away from Congress going home for the holiday break and there is still no deal on avoiding the fiscal cliff.

Discussions described as "tense" earlier this week are now being called "frank." It's not clear if that means progress.

Republicans and the Obama administration were no closer to a deal Friday morning after a second face-to-face between President Obama and Republican House Speaker John Boehner.

"The president wants to pretend that spending isn't the problem. That's why we don't have an agreement," said Boehner.

They met in the Oval Office for almost an hour. Aides for both sides called the meeting "frank."

Boehner wants more spending cuts. The president insists the wealthy should pay more, and he's still pressuring Congress to extend tax breaks for the middle class - deal or not:

"We want Congress to hear that they shouldn't be fooling around with people's Christmas like this," said the president.

"I would expect that to happen right before or right after the first of the year," said Dana Hunter, a Washington, DC resident who is optimistic.

"I'm kinda neutral on it. I just hope they hurry up and get something settled," said Joshua Gilchrist, Washington, DC.

The Senate is scheduled to go home one week from today. Some House members are already leaving. Unless there's a breakthrough, there's nothing for them to do. They will return if there's a deal, or House leaders can temporarily approve it until Congress resumes in January.

This weekend was the soft deadline to reach a general compromise. There is no word on whether further meetings are scheduled for today.

Powered by WorldNow