President Obama announced on Friday that he had spoken to House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) since the failure of the GOP’s so-called Plan B and “offered to compromise with Republicans in Congress” in the ongoing negotiations to avert the so-called fiscal cliff.
Obama said he is “ready and willing” to get “a comprehensive package done” of revenue increases in spending cuts “all at once” or in “several different steps” and reiterated that the final product will “need support from Democrats and Republicans.”
“Nobody gets 100 percent of what they want everyone has to give in a sensible way,” Obama said at least twice. He stressed that taxes will go up on all Americans unless Congress reaches a deal before Jan. 1 and called on lawmakers to pass legislation preserving lower rates for 98 percent of Americans. On Thursday, however, Republicans in the House refused to support a measure that increased taxes on Americans earning more than $1 million, even though it included a separate bill of spending cuts. Obama has called on preserving tax reductions for couples earning less than $250,000, but has increased the threshold to $400,000 in negotiations.
Lawmakers, Obama said, should “cool off, drink some egg nog, have Christmas cookies, sing some carols” and then return to Washington after Christmas and “work out a deal.” “We move forward together or we don’t move forward at all,” he insisted.