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McConnell Appeals To Biden To Break Through Fiscal Cliff Logjam

Filed by KOSU News in US News.
December 30, 2012

Republican Sen. Mitch McConnell announced Sunday afternoon on the Senate floor that the GOP’s latest offer in the fiscal cliff negotiations — made Saturday night at 7 p.m. to the Democrats — is stalled, NPR’s David Welna reports.

In addition to speaking with Democratic Sen. Harry Reid, McConnell said he’s also called Vice President Joe Biden “to see if he could help jump start the negotiations on their side.” McConnell said he has worked with Biden successfully in the past.

“The consequences of this are too high for the American people to be engaged in a political messaging campaign. I’m interested in a result here. And I’m willing to work with whomever can help,” he said.

Welna tells our Newscast Desk:

“Democratic Sen. Harry Reid confirmed on floor that Democrats are currently unable to make a counteroffer, saying that while McConnell has shown ‘good faith,’ some pretty big issues still divide them.”

A GOP aide tells Welna there are a number of sticking points, including taxation levels on large estates and the cut-off point for income levels eligible for extended tax cuts. Welna reports:

“He said Democrats have made two proposals since Friday; Republicans have made four, including their latest from last night.

“Biden is reported to be in Wilmington. It’s not clear yet how he might intervene in what’s clearly to become a do-or-die moment in these talks. The Senate GOP and Democratic caucuses are scheduled to meet separately behind closed doors at 3 p.m. to discuss where things stand.”

[Copyright 2012 National Public Radio]

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