Fiscal Cliff Notes
Obama Hits the Road for Michigan
Monday, December 10, 2012 - 12:30pm
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Following his weekend closed-door bargaining session with House Speaker John Boehner,  President Obama is traveling to  Michigan today to continue to campaign for his tax policies as part of the fiscal cliff negotiations.

Obama will tour the Daimler-Detroit Diesel Corporations at 2 p.m. to argue in favor of raising tax rates on the wealthiest 2 percent of Americans while extending the Bush-era tax cuts to the middle class. He will also warn Michiganders that the economy will take a beating unless he and congressional leaders reach an accord in the next week or two to avert a year-end fiscal calamity of automatic tax increases and spending cuts. - Read more at CBS News

SECRET TALKS A GOOD OMEN The first face-to-face meeting between the president and Boehner in nearly a month was a very positive sign after a week in which it seemed that fiscal cliff talks were going nowhere. 

White House officials and the speaker's staff were light on the details of what, if anything, came from the Sunday afternoon meeting. However, Boehner's spokesman Michael Steel told The Washington Post that "both lines of communication remain open” – the same language used by the White House to describe the meeting.

The more upbeat pronouncements followed  Boehner’s pessimistic comments to reporters on Friday that  there was "no progress to report" on negotiations.   -  Read more at The Fiscal Times

CORKER: OBAMA’S PLAN IS ‘BEST ROUTE’
And there was other good news for the president over the weekend.  Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., , a member of the Senate Banking Committee, told "Fox News Sunday" that Obama's plan to raise tax rates on the nation's wealthiest 2 percent is "the best route" to take. Since Obama has "the upper hand," as Corker put it, bowing  to the president on tax rates will give Republicans leverage next year when Congress takes up entitlement reform.

“A lot of people are putting forth a theory – and I actually think it has merit – where you go and you give the president the 2 percent increase that he's talking about, the rate increase on the top 2 percent – and all of a sudden the shift goes back to entitlements,” Corker said. “And all of a sudden, once you give him a top rate on the 2 percent it's actually a much lesser tax increase than what he's been talking about," Corker said.   -  Read more at The Hill

IMF: TEMPORARY FIX WON’T CUT IT 
The U.S. needs to raise taxes and cut spending to address the fiscal cliff, International Monetary Fund chief Christine Lagarde Told Candy Crawley on CNN’s “State of the Union” Sunday, warning that even temporary fixes will be devastating to economic growth.

“I don’t think [a temporary fix] is enough because there is still that degree of uncertainty that fuels doubt that prevents investors, entrepreneurs, households from making decisions, because they don’t know what tomorrow will be,” she said. “They know that a fix has been found for today. But there is still work to be done tomorrow and the day after tomorrow.”  -  Read more at CNN

For more news on the approaching fiscal cliff, follow us on Twitter @Fiscalcliffnote

Washington Correspondent Brianna Ehley, based in D.C., covers Congress, government agencies and spending issues, health care, and tax and economic policy for The Fiscal Times.