Fiscal Cliff Notes for Dec. 7, 2012
24 days to the fiscal cliff
Good morning, the White House continues its campaign to take it to the people on the fiscal cliff. On Thursday President Barack Obama hung out with a northern Virginia family who would pay more if Congress lets tax breaks expire on Dec. 31, on Friday, it's Vice President Joe Biden's turn for the photo op. Biden will lunch with "middle class Americans who would see their income taxes go up" if Congress fails to act.
One of the people at the Biden event got their through telling their story at the White House #My2k Twitter feed. The $2,000 represents the amount of extra taxes many would pay if the breaks expire.
By now you may know....Obama is insisting that Republicans first extend the tax break for 98 percent of earners, while top earners should have rates rise.
NEW POLL: DEFICIT AND DEBT SHOULD BE PRIORITIES
A poll released on Friday show 83 percent of respondents "believe the budget deficit and national debt should be the top priorities for elected officials in Washington." Next priority ranking in the Allstate--National Journal Heartland Monitor Poll: 83 percent Social Security and Medicare, followed by good-paying jobs at 79 percent. Those findings sum up how hard it is to make a fiscal cliff deal: people want it all.
JOBLESS RATE FOR NOVEMBER, 7.7 PERCENT, DROPS TO FOUR YEAR LOW: HELPS OBAMA
ON FISCAL CLIFF
The drop in the rate may further embolden Obama and bolster the perception he wants that he is steering the nation towards an economic recovery. If the number had jumped, Republicans would have been all over the president. With the good news, Obama can stay focuses on his top priority--extending the tax breaks for the 98 percenters.
AFSCME, SEIU, NEA: DON'T TOUCH MEDICARE, MEDICAID AND EDUCATION IN FISCAL CLIFF BATTLE
Obama, however, is not immune from pressure from his left flank. Three top Democratic-allied unions, AFSCME, SEIU and the NEA are launching Friday a television ad campaign aimed at lawmakers in Virginia, Missouri, Ohio and Montana to "protect" Medicare, Medicaid and education funding in fiscal cliff dealmaking.
BOEHNER ON FRIDAY: DEMOCRATS "SLOW-WALK" TO "EDGE OF FISCAL CLIFF"
Despite the upbeat jobs report, House Speaker John Boenher (R-Ohio) used the peg to accuse Democrats of slow-walking to the fiscal cliff:
Said Boehner, "The Democrats' plan to slow-walk our economy to the edge of the fiscal cliff instead of engaging in serious talks is a threat to our economy. Republicans have offered a balanced proposal to avert the cliff that includes spending cuts and tax reforms the president once supported; the White House has only offered a joke that couldn't pass the House or the Senate. Republicans passed bipartisan legislation stopping the tax hikes and replacing the defense sequester to avert the fiscal cliff; Senate Democrats talked openly about driving off of it. And while the president insists on raising small businesses' tax rates instead of cutting spending, small business hiring plans have plummeted. That takes jobs away from the American people at the very time small businesses are struggling to create them.
"The Democrats' slow-walk strategy is unfair to taxpayers, unfair to small businesses, and unfair to all those looking for work. If the president doesn't like our plan, he has an obligation to send us one that can pass both houses of Congress as quickly as possible. We're ready and eager to work with him on such a proposal."