Fiscal Cliff Notes
‘Fiscal Cliff Fatigue Is Driving Us Into the Ground’
Thursday, December 6, 2012 - 5:31pm
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Caterpillar’s customers are “scared to death” about going over the fiscal cliff.  The CEO of the Fortune 100 company, Doug Oberhelman, told CNBC on Thursday.

"I talk every day to our customers around this country, and they're all scared to death about what happens in January," Oberhelman told CNBC's "Squawk Box" on Thursday. "All I know is, going over the cliff is too hot to handle."

According to Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, President Obama is “absolutely” ready to send the country over the cliff if Republicans don’t give in to raising tax rates on the rich. (Better load up on the Xanax.)  -  Read more at CNBC

DEBT CEILING TOSSED INTO THE DRAMA    In a political jousting match on the Senate floor on Thursday, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell attempted to call a vote that would allow the president to have control over raising the debt ceiling, which he assumed would not get the majority needed to pass. But Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid called McConnell’s bluff and said he would allow the vote only if the Minority Leader would let the vote pass with a simple majority, not a filibuster-proof 60 votes. Realizing he had been trapped, McConnell objected and blocked the vote.

The brief scuffle was part of the slowly unfolding drama of the fiscal cliff fight in Washington. The White House has insisted upon raising the country’s borrowing limit as part of an opening big in negotiations last week. The GOP quickly rejected that offer and the two parties have been at an impasse ever since.  -  Read more at The Wall Street Journal

ARE REPUBLICANS CAVING ON TAX RATES?    Fearing the inevitability of raising taxes on the rich, many GOP lawmakers are calling on House Speaker John Boehner to agree to increasing tax rates on the wealthiest two percent now, while he still has some leverage to demand cuts to entitlement spending.
“I and some others are advocating giving the president what he wants,” said Rep. Steven C. LaTourette (R-Ohio). But he stressed that this must be part of a package that slows federal borrowing and reduces the debt by $4 trillion to $5 trillion.  -  Read more at The Washington Post

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.