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Nov 14, 2012 Comments Off on Obama To Open Fiscal Cliff Talks With Demand For $1.6 Trillion In New Taxes Pat Dollard

Excerpted from Briefing Room: President Obama is taking a tough opening stance in talks over deficit reduction, pushing Republicans to accept a plan that calls for $1.6 trillion in new tax revenue over the next ten years, according to reports.

The figure is double the $800 billion last discussed by the White House and House Speaker Boehner (R-Ohio) during their 2011 negotiations on raising the debt-ceiling limit.

The president’s plan is based on his most recent budget proposal, which sought the $1.6 in new revenues by targeting the wealthy and corporations.

The president and congressional lawmakers are set to meet at the White House on Friday as both sides begin hammering out a deficit-cutting plan that helps the nation move past the “fiscal cliff” of rising tax rates and automatic spending cuts set to take effect in January 2013.

Both sides say they hope to avoid the fiscal cliff, but are at an impasse over taxes, with the president insisting that the wealthy pay more.

House Republicans on Wednesday were incredulous at the president’s opening bid.

“That is so 2009. It’s like he is still in charge of this place,” said Rep. Tim Huelskamp (R-Kan.), referring to the last time Democrats had a majority in the House.

The president hopes to extend the expiring George W. Bush-era tax rates for those families making less than $250,000 per year. Republicans, though, say they want the rates extended across-the-board.

On Tuesday the president met privately with a number of union leaders and liberal activists to discuss his plan. In the meeting Obama reportedly promised to make good on his vow to renew low tax rates for the middle class and let them expire for wealthy households.

Obama will also meet with executives of some of the largest American companies, including Ford, General Electric and Wal-Mart, to sell his deficit-reduction plan on Wednesday.

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