NPR : News

Filed Under:

Fiscal Cliff Talks Get Started; Two Sides Sound Optimistic

President Obama and congressional leaders from both major parties met at the White House this morning for the first of what will likely be many negotiations aimed at averting a plunge over the so-called fiscal cliff.

We watched for news from the key players — who include House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio — and updated with highlights.

Just before the meeting, this message was posted on Boehner's Twitter page:

"Look forward to mtg w/@WhiteHouse re: plan to avert #fiscalcliff via pro-growth tax reform & spending cuts; not tax rate hikes"

The administration, on the other hand, is tweeting a "closer look at how the President's plan raises $1.6T in revenue pic.twitter.com/m7Cogl1d."

Update at 11:45 a.m. ET. Leaders Sound United Afterward:

As often happens after the first set of talks on tough issues, the lawmakers have emerged from the meeting to say the discussions were constructive, that they understand a solution needs to be reached and that they're confident they can do it.

-- Boehner: "I outlined a framework that deals with reforming our tax code and reforming our spending. I believe that the framework that I outlined our meeting today is consistent with the president's call for a fair and balanced approach. To show our seriousness we put revenue on the table as long as it's accompanied by significant espending cuts. ... I believe we can do this."

-- Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev.: "I feel very good about what we talked about." The "cornerstones" of a deal are there. Reid said lawmakers and their staffs will work through the Thanksgiving recess and then meet with the president again after that holiday.

-- House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif.: "A very constructive meeting. ... Every person in America knows that we must reach agreement." And she said the outlines of a deal need to be rolled out well before Christmas so that consumers have confidence during the crucial holiday shopping season.

-- Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky.: "We're prepared to put revenue on the table provided we fix the real problem," which he said is the rising cost of entitlement programs.

Update at 10:35 a.m. ET. "We're Going To Get To Work," Obama says:

Saying that "our challenge is to make sure that we are able to cooperate together, work together, find some common ground, make some tough compromise [and] build some consensus," President Obama just welcomed Boehner and other leaders to the White House.

"We're going to get to work," he added, before also wishing Boehner a day-early happy birthday.

Copyright 2012 National Public Radio. To see more, visit http://www.npr.org/.

NPR

Opulent And Apolitical: The Art Of The Met's Islamic Galleries

Navina Haidar, an Islamic art curator at the Met, says she isn't interested in ideology: "The only place where we allow ourselves any passion is in the artistic joy ... of something that's beautiful."
NPR

How New Jersey Tamed The Wild Blueberry For Global Production

In the past 10 years, the global blueberry crop has tripled. Yet the big, round commercial blueberry is a fairly recent innovation. It was created by breeders exactly 100 years ago, in New Jersey.
WAMU 88.5

Fannie Lou Hamer and the Fight for Voting Rights

Kojo explores the life and legacy of Fannie Lou Hamer, a poor Mississippi sharecropper who became an outspoken voice in the civil rights movement and the fight for voting rights.

WAMU 88.5

Computer Guys and Gal

Chrysler recalls cars to boost their cybersecurity. Microsoft debuts its new Windows 10 operating system. And navigation tech could bring us robotic lawn mowers. The Computer Guys and Gal explain.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.