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VIDEO: President Obama's press conference on "fiscal cliff," plans to curb gun violence


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As President Obama noted, we can't end all gun violence, but we can reduce it. Making an effort to save lives makes sense, doing nothing doesn't. Seeing the president speak out and demand action is a step forward, but it's also up to us to pressure our representatives to follow through and do something about all the weapons of war used against our loved ones, among other common sense steps.

Obama also answered questions on The Boehner's Plan BS and the so-called "fiscal cliff" negotiations.


VIDEO-- Nancy Pelosi: No deal without ending Bush tax cuts for the wealthy


Martha Raddatz asked if a deal without including an extension of the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy was acceptable.


Well, no, I mean, the president made it very clear in his campaign that there is not enough — there are not enough resources.  What you just described is a formula and a blueprint for hampering our future. You cannot go forward — you have to cut some investments. If you cut too many, you’re hampering growth, you’re hampering education, our investments for the future. If it’s going to bring in revenue, the president has been very clear that the higher income people have to pay their fair share.

As you can see, Martha Raddatz's interview with Nancy Pelosi was on ABC's “This Week,” and Pelosi flatly stated that without ending the Bush tax cuts for the wealthy, by simply closing loopholes and capping tax deductions, there would be no deal on the "fiscal cliff" aka fiscal curb, fiscal slope, fiscal speed bump, etc.

John Boehner would disagree. ABC:

Pelosi’s position puts her directly at odds with GOP House Speaker John Boehner, who said tax rate hikes would be ”unacceptable” during an interview with ”World News” anchor Diane Sawyer earlier this month. Boehner has said he is open to rewriting the tax code and closing loopholes, which would result in additional revenue for the federal government, but has ruled out rate hikes for the wealthy.

Pelosi made it clear that she also doesn't want to go over that fiscal speed bump:

 "The spirit at the table was one of everybody wants to make the best effort to get this done. Hopefully that is possible; hopefully it is possible by the middle of December so the confidence of the markets and most importantly the confidence of the consumers returns to infuse our economy with demand, which creates jobs."

She made a good point: It's consumers who are the job creators.


Nancy Pelosi seeks at least $4 trillion cut to deficit as GOP moves toward Obama on taxes in talks


Okay, first things first: That so-called “fiscal cliff” is more like a “fiscal slope” or “fiscal curb." Or speed bump.

That said, Roll Call is reporting that the GOP is bending on taxes as fiscal speed bump talks begin, and that the impending fake-doomy, scary, catastrophic, omg the world is going to end Cliffageddon can be averted. Apparently, Congressional leaders don't like the looks of the stock market these days, and you know what that means... magically breaking gridlock... sort of:

The four top leaders in Congress all expressed confidence that they could avert the fiscal cliff after Speaker John A. Boehner offered up revenue and Democrats agreed to pursue spending cuts during an hourlong meeting Friday at the White House.

The Ohio Republican told reporters that he proposed a framework for dealing with the cliff that would tie revenue to spending cuts “consistent with the president’s call for a balanced approach.”

Luckily, the "Democratic leader opposes cutting Medicare benefits to strike a deal," meaning Nancy Pelosi is against compromising at the expense of Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries.

Many of us Dems have been very concerned about ideas being floated such as raising the Medicare eligibility age above 65, a policy that is included in Paul Ryan’s Kill Medicare Budget plan. Here's Nancy:

Pelosi hopes the negotiations will yield at least $4 trillion in deficit reduction, although she said she wasn't speaking for everyone. Here's more of what she told reporters after meeting with President Obama and congressional leaders, via The Hill:

"Even if we didn't come out of the room with a solution … we came out with a plan of action, an understanding of what we wanted to achieve, a timetable for how to get it done [and] what would spring from those discussions... Each of us had some idea about how we can get this done in a way that instills confidence even as we proceed down the path."

MSNBC is reporting that Republicans are still very resistant to letting tax cuts for the very rich expire, and that Democrats will still have to make "tough compromises."

So will the tax break number move from those making $250,000 and over to a million and over? And what about Medicare and Medicaid? I'm not feeling as optimistic as I'd like.

And just for good measure, let's remember what GOP idol Ronald Reagan said: “Social Security has nothing to do with the deficit.”


VIDEO: That so-called "fiscal cliff" is more like a "fiscal slope" or "fiscal curb"


The media is working itself into yet another frenzy, this time about the so-called "fiscal cliff" clock that's ticking away. They must need another ratings boost now that the Big Election Week has come and gone.

So it's all Fiscal Cliff all the time. If no tax deal is made by the January deadline, we're all gonna die! We'll have another Great Depression! We'll all go bald and break out in welts and never eat pie again! Help meeeee!

But no. That won't happen. Okay, some of us will go bald at some point, but we won't die and there may be a temporary dip unless Congress does nothing, which won't happen. They'll snap to attention and legislate retroactively. No one other than the top 2% will have their taxes go up.

As Chris Hayes points out, Ben Bernanke coined the phrase "fiscal cliff" to "kick Congress's butt to do something stimulative, and you CAN go off it. It's a little driveway!"

A slope. A curb. A little driveway. A situation that, should it occur, would be immediately rectified. 'Nuff said.

Well, except saying that the GOP has "no vision for the future."