Congress

12:11pm

Wed December 26, 2012
The Two-Way

'Fiscal Cliff' Deadline Looms, But Sense Of Urgency Seems To Be Lacking

Originally published on Wed December 26, 2012 12:49 pm

Will the lights be on late at the White House for the next few nights, or will talks about the "fiscal cliff" be less than dramatic?
Larry Downing Reuters /Landov

President Obama is "cutting short" a vacation that he'd already said he would cut short. "See you next week," he told reporters last week before leaving for Hawaii. The president is now due back at the White House on Thursday, which is pretty much what was expected. His family will stay in Hawaii until after the New Year.

Senators are also coming back to Washington, but many aren't likely to get to the Capitol until Thursday evening.

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4:48am

Sun December 23, 2012
Politics

Fiscal Cliff, Gun Debate Looms As Lawmakers Take Holiday Break

Originally published on Sun December 23, 2012 10:41 am

Transcript

RACHEL MARTIN, HOST:

This is WEEKEND EDITION from NPR News. I'm Rachel Martin. Could eggnog be the antidote to the looming fiscal cliff? President Obama expressed this very hope as he left town for Christmas in Hawaii on Friday, saying maybe eggnog and Christmas cookies could put lawmakers in a more cooperative mood in time to prevent the automatic tax hikes and spending cuts set to take effect with the new year. The president said lawmakers might also benefit from a short cooling-off period outside the partisan pressure cooker here in Washington.

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3:11pm

Sat December 22, 2012
Politics

In The Minority, But Sticking To Party Lines

Originally published on Sat December 22, 2012 4:37 pm

Transcript

GUY RAZ, HOST:

It's WEEKENDS on ALL THINGS CONSIDERED from NPR News. I'm Guy Raz.

It seems less and less likely that a deal to avert the fiscal cliff will be reached before the New Year. And much of that may have to do with a divided opposition. James Fallows of The Atlantic is with me now, as he is most Saturdays. Jim, hello.

JAMES FALLOWS: Hello, Guy.

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4:44am

Sat December 22, 2012
Politics

After 'Plan B' Fizzles, What's Boehner's Next Move?

Originally published on Wed December 26, 2012 9:40 am

Transcript

SCOTT SIMON, HOST:

As we've just heard, this breakdown in negotiations within the Republican Party is troubling for Speaker Boehner. It also stifles negotiations to avert the combination of deep spending cuts and tax increases. That will come without a bipartisan agreement.

We're joined by Norm Ornstein, an experienced observer of Congress and politics. He's resident scholar at the American Enterprise Institute. Thanks for being with us.

NORM ORNSTEIN: Oh, it's always a pleasure, Scott.

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4:13pm

Fri December 21, 2012
The Two-Way

Obama On Fiscal Cliff Talks: 'I Actually Still Think We Can Get It Done'

At a press conference Friday, President Obama urges Congress to pass a scaled-back package to avert end-of-year tax hikes and spending cuts.
Mandel Ngan AFP/Getty Images

In a news conference Friday, President Obama said there were still things the parties could agree on about the automatic tax-rate increases and spending cuts at the end of the year. But he said parties would have to work together to get a plan approved in the next 10 days.

"Call me a hopeless optimist, but I actually still think we can get it done," he said, after meeting with Senate Democratic leader Harry Reid and speaking to Republican House Speaker John Boehner.

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