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Boehner nixes lifting debt ceiling: 28 days to the fiscal cliff

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Fiscal Cliff Notes for Dec. 3, 2012
28 days to the fiscal cliff

White House top fiscal cliff dealer, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner, hit five Sunday shows, made no new offers and said Congress has to first extend most the tax breaks expiring on Dec. 31. Which is exactly the same place the White House was and is.

Good Monday morning....


Ya can't blame team Obama for trying but....

House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) swatted down Sunday the White House bid to get Congress to lift the debt ceiling totally as part of the fiscal cliff negotiations. Not going to happen, Boehner said on Fox News Sunday.

"Silliness," Boehner told Chris Wallace. "Congress is never going to give up this power."


House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Sunday upped pressure on Boehner to do a stand-alone vote on extending federal tax breaks due to expire on Dec. 31--the ones that cover 98 percent of us.

From Pelosi: "The message from the American people is loud and clear: we need solutions not stalemates.

"We continue to call on Speaker Boehner to immediately schedule a vote on the Senate-passed bill to extend tax cuts for the middle class, which the President has said he will sign immediately. Congressional Republicans must heed the call of middle class families during this holiday season, end the uncertainty and stop holding middle income tax cuts hostage to tax cuts for the rich. If Speaker Boehner refuses to schedule this widely-supported bill for a vote, Democrats will introduce a discharge petition to automatically bring to the floor the Senate-passed middle class tax cuts.

"We must find a bold, balanced and fair agreement to avoid the fiscal cliff. The clock is ticking and stalemates are a luxury we cannot afford."


The fiscal cliff dramas of the day are with President Barack Obama overtly focused more on nuclear proliferation and Bulgaria for a chunk of the day

Over at Bloomberg News, Julianna Goldman & Roger Runningen gauge how much more power Obama got in dealing with the Republicans as a result of his re-election.

Their lede: "President Barack Obama's stance on the so-called fiscal cliff talks is a bet that his re-election gave him the political clout to force Republicans to accept higher taxes on upper-income Americans as a step toward reducing the deficit.

"Obama's posture was shown in the proposal Timothy F. Geithner laid out for congressional leaders last week: a reprise of the president's prior budget proposals, with $1.6 trillion in tax increases and about $350 billion in health care savings, primarily in Medicare. He also asked for an Aug. 1 deadline for decisions on income tax overhaul and further spending cuts. The fiscal cliff refers to $607 billion in spending cuts and tax increases that would take effect in January unless Congress acts."

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