Fiscal cliff looms, economy could enter another recession - New York News

Fiscal cliff looms, economy could enter another recession

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WASHINGTON -

More posturing over the weekend from the White House and Republicans in Congress as the fiscal cliff gets closer and closer.

Despite some early optimism, there are some predictions now that there won't be a deal -- that nearly all of us will face tax hikes at the end of the year and the economy could enter another recession.

With the White House ensuring that he was barely seen, the President left for a golf outing Sunday with former President Clinton.  The clock, meanwhile, keeps ticking as his point man in fiscal cliff negotiations took to five Sunday talk shows to make the administration's case.

"I think that's a very good set of proposals and we think that's good for the economy and if they have some different suggestions want to go further in some areas then they should lay that out to us," said Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on "FOX News Sunday."

The President's plan calls for $1.6 trillion in new taxes -- mostly aimed at the wealthy -- those would be assured.  Less sure -- the promised spending cuts that Republicans say might never actually happen -- meaning the Government takes in more money and spends more money, driving the debt higher.

"I mean think about the -- the proposal we got from the president.  If we gave the president $1.6 trillion of new money, what do you think he'd do with it?  He's going to spend it.  It's what Washington does," said Speaker of the House John Boehner on "FOX News Sunday."

The White House points out that they at least have a plan, while Republicans don't have specifics.  But one nonstarter, a White House proposal to give the President broad new power to run up far more public debt than we face now -- bypassing the Congressional oversight that's now in place.

A final agreement may hinge on a willingness to tackle big entitlement programs like Medicare and Social Security -- and a willingness to face the political risks associated with them.

 

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