The Ticket

Weekend in politics: Obama takes ‘fiscal cliff’ plan on the road, and more

The Ticket

President Barack Obama takes his plan for avoiding the "fiscal cliff" on the road Friday with a tour and remarks at The Rodon Group Manufacturing Facility in Hatfield, Pa.

The White House is looking to drum up public support with the campaign-style event for a plan that includes $1.6 trillion in new tax revenues plus some $400 billion in savings in entitlement programs. It also folds in relief for Americans hit by the home foreclosure crisis and an extension of the payroll tax holiday and unemployment assistance. There's also a $50 billion jobs plan that's mostly infrastructure spending.

The White House definitely will be looking for a better reception Friday than the plan got Thursday when Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner presented it to Republican House Speaker John Boehner. Congressional Republicans rejected it as nothing more than the same plan Obama has been pushing since last year, including tax increases on the richest Americans, Yahoo News White House Correspondent Olivier Knox reports.

"I remain hopeful that productive conversations can be had in the days ahead, but the White House has to get serious," Boehner said. "This is not a game. Jobs are on the line. The American economy is on the line. And this is a moment for adult leadership."

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The fiscal cliff is an automatic one-two punch of higher taxes scheduled to kick in Jan. 1 and deep spending cuts set to start the following day. Many economists say the economic recovery will be in jeopardy if a deal is not reached.

The fiscal cliff is certain to be the primary topic on the Sunday talk shows. One question likely to be addressed: Was the spirit of compromise that seemed present in Washington right after the election never genuine, and, even if it was, has it already disappeared?

Also worth noting this weekend: Saturday is World AIDS Day, and a Presidential Proclamation urges governors, U.S. territorial officials, and the American people to join in appropriate activities to remember men, women, and children who have lost their lives to AIDS and to provide support and comfort to those living with the disease.

And then there is this: President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama are expected to attend the Kennedy Center Honors Gala on Sunday. This year's honorees are blues musician Buddy Guy, actor and director Dustin Hoffman, comedian and TV host David Letterman, ballerina Natalia Makarova, and rock band Led Zeppelin, with individual members John Paul Jones, Jimmy Page and Robert Plant each receiving the award.

And this: Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid turns 73 on Sunday.

Sources:
Yahoo! News White House Correspondent Olivier Knox, Associated Press

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