Leaders outline ‘cliff’ stands
Treasury secretary, House speaker hit TV shows to blame rival party for stalemate.
WASHINGTON — At a stalemate in their talks to avoid a selfimposed fiscal crisis at the end of this month, the lead negotiators for the White House and congressional Republicans used the Sunday television news shows to defend their respective positions and blame the other side for the impasse.
“Right now I would say we’re nowhere, period. We’re nowhere,” House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said on “Fox News Sunday.”
“We’ve put a serious ofler on the table by putting revenues out there to try to get this question resolved,” he said. “But the White House has responded with virtually nothing.”
For the administration, Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner countered on Fox and four other programs by outlining President Barack Obama’s proposals for longterm deficit reduction and insisting that Republicans were blocking compromise by their opposition to letting the Bush-era tax rates on high incomes expire as scheduled by law on Dec. 31. Obama and Democratic lawmakers want