Instead of negotiating with Congressional leaders to avert the fiscal cliff, President Barack Obama visited a Northern Virginia family for a photo op on Thursday and reiterated that he would not sign any deal that did not raise taxes on families with incomes above $250,000.
According to The Hill, Obama said that everyone will have to “share in some sacrifice,” and, “it starts with folks who are in the best position to sacrifice.”
“Just to be clear, I’m not going to sign any package that somehow prevents the top rate from going up, the top 2 percent from going up,” Obama said.
Obama also said the family he met with should not be burdened by tax increases and urged Congress to pass a deal now since the “closer it gets to the brink, the more stressed we’re going to be.”
Congress has not been able to make progress on the fiscal cliff negotiations. Obama has been AWOL from the negotiations and his plan to avert the fiscal cliff cannot even get the support of Congressional Democrats, which may be why Obama is deciding to gin up support for his plan outside the halls of Congress.
This week, Senate Minority Leader Sen. Mitch McConnell (R-KY) tried to force Senate Democrats to vote on Obama’s plan, which includes $1.6 trillion in tax increases in addition to granting the president unprecedented powers to raise the debt ceiling without Congressional approval. Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid (D-NV), fully aware Democrats did not support Obama’s plan, blocked the vote.
McConnell also tried to force the Senate to vote on giving Obama unilateral power to raise the debt ceiling and Reid again blocked the vote.
Obama even indicated that he would be more than willing to take the country over the fiscal cliff and veto his own plan to increase taxes if Republicans did not give him unlimited power to raise the debt ceiling without Congressional approval.