Obama, top Republican meet on fiscal cliff

2012-12-10 08:06
US House Speaker John Boehner. (File, AFP)

US House Speaker John Boehner. (File, AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Washington - President Barack Obama and House of Representatives speaker John Boehner met on Sunday to discuss the so-called impending fiscal cliff of steep tax hikes and spending cuts.

No details of the talks were given, but a statement from Boehner's office said "the lines of communication remain open", And White House spokesperson Josh Earnest said, word for word, the same thing, also refusing to go into details.

The fact that the two sides avoided a chance to put duelling spins on the talks stood in contrast to the more hostile tone that has pervaded the showdown in recent days.

Boehner said on Friday he could report "no progress" in deficit talks. He accused the White House of recklessly pushing the country to the fiscal brink over tax hikes.

The last time the two leaders had spoken was Wednesday, by telephone.

The so-called fiscal cliff refers to a combination of severe tax increases and spending cuts due to kick in automatically in January if the president and Congress don't find a compromise plan to cut the deficit first.

No compromise

Economists warn that careening over the fiscal cliff would throw the country back into a recession.

Obama sent Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner to Capitol Hill last week with an opening gambit, proposing $1.6 trillion in new tax revenues over the next decade, mainly from higher tax rates on the wealthiest 2% of Americans.

A Republican counter-offer included a plan for $800bn in tax revenue raised through closing loopholes and ending some deductions. Both plans have been rejected.

In his weekly address Saturday, Obama said he was willing to find ways to reduce health costs and make more entitlement spending cuts as sought by the Republicans.

But he said asking "the wealthiest Americans to pay higher tax rates - that's one principle I won't compromise on."


Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.
Read more on:    barack obama  |  john boehner  |  us

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
1 comment
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Rugby World Cup 2015

All the action from the 2015 RWC, including live coverage of all 48 matches, breaking news, fixtures, results, logs - and much more!


Rugby World Cup 2015

Heyneke: Still some loose ends
LIVE: Canada v Romania
England demise should 'sharpen' Bok focus
LIVE: Fiji v Uruguay
Traffic Alerts

Are you burning the candle at both ends? Listen to your body and your emotional reactions. Know when to slow down or stop. It is a...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.