Fiscal Cliff

1:14pm

Tue December 4, 2012
It's All Politics

Obama And Boehner Call It Negotiation; The Rest Of Us Are Permitted To Laugh

Originally published on Sat December 8, 2012 11:29 am

President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner meet in the White House on July 23, 2011. At that time, they were discussing how to avert a debt default. The talks ultimately led to the deal that now brings us aspects of the so-called fiscal cliff.
Jewel Samad AFP/Getty Images

If you're tempted to throw back your head and guffaw when you hear the word "negotiation" linked with "Congress" and "fiscal cliff," please, don't hesitate.

Because what you're seeing play out publicly between congressional Republicans and Democrats and the White House bears little resemblance to negotiation.

"The game that's being played is the same game that's been played over the past few years — brinksmanship, and hard positional bargaining," says William Ury, who knows negotiation when he sees it.

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6:52am

Tue December 4, 2012
It's All Politics

Obama Changes Tack With Congressional Republicans

Originally published on Tue December 4, 2012 10:37 am

President Obama speaks at the National Defense University in Washington on Monday. Since his re-election four weeks ago, Obama is showing signs of a new, more aggressive leadership style.
Charles Dharapak AP

Throughout his first term, some of President Obama's critics said he wasn't a tough enough negotiator. They felt he caved to Republicans too early, too often. Since his re-election, Obama has subtly changed his approach. He's bringing a more aggressive style — but some critics say it's not the best way to find common ground.

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6:51am

Tue December 4, 2012
The Two-Way

Three 'Should Read Stories' About The 'Fiscal Cliff'

How long and how late will talks go? (The Capitol dome.)
Karen Bleier AFP/Getty Images
  • Mara Liasson, on 'Morning Edition'
  • Renee Montagne and Tamara Keith, on 'Morning Edition'

The back-and-forth continues between the White House and Republican leaders in Congress about how to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff that arrives at midnight Dec. 31 — when Bush-era tax cuts are set to expire and automatic spending cuts are set to begin.

The big news Monday was the "counteroffer" put forward by House Republicans.

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1:50am

Tue December 4, 2012
Shots - Health News

The (Huge And Rarely Discussed) Health Insurance Tax Break

Originally published on Wed December 5, 2012 7:56 am

The largest tax break in the federal code doesn't appear on the forms the average person fills out each year.
iStockphoto.com

What's the largest tax break in the federal tax code?

If you said the mortgage interest deduction, you'd be wrong. The break for charitable giving? Nope. How about capital gains, or state and local taxes? No, and no.

Believe it or not, dollar for dollar, the most tax revenue the federal government forgoes every year is from not taxing the value of health insurance that employers provide their workers.

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3:01pm

Mon December 3, 2012
The Two-Way

House GOP Sends Obama Its 'Fiscal Cliff' Counteroffer

Originally published on Mon December 3, 2012 4:26 pm

Speaker of the House Rep. John Boehner arrives for a news conference in November.
Alex Wong Getty Images

Leaders of the Republican-controlled House sent President Obama a counteroffer that would avoid the fiscal cliff and cut $2.2 trillion from the country's deficit over the next decade.

According to NPR's David Welna, the bottom line is that it achieves those cuts with $800 billion in new tax revenue and the rest through a combination of cuts to entitlements.

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