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Is A ‘Fiscal Cliff’ Deal Near?

Filed by KOSU News in Politics.
December 18, 2012

Talks are “heating up.”

Differences are “narrowing.”

The two sides have “moved close to agreement.”

Whichever way you put it, the stories this morning about talks to avoid going over the so-called fiscal cliff of year-end tax increases and automatic spending cuts all seem to be saying that President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, are within reach of a deal.

As NPR’s Scott Horsley put it on Morning Edition, the lawmakers appear to have “scaled the walls of ideology. Now they just have to wade through the muck of math” to make the numbers work

The Washington Post’s Ezra Klein summed up the shape of the still-evolving deal this way:

– “Boehner offered to let tax rates rise for income over $1 million. The White House wanted to let tax rates rise for income over $250,000. The compromise will likely be somewhere in between.”

– “On the spending side, the Democrats’ headline concession will be accepting chained-CPI, which is to say, accepting a cut to Social Security benefits.”

Of course, we’ve seen the president and House speaker come close to striking a “grand bargain” before, only to see the deal fall apart. [Copyright 2012 National Public Radio]

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