US president Barack Obama will return to Washington – from vacation in his home state of Hawaii – to host congressional leaders, including his bitter Republican rivals, in a last-ditch attempt to halt America’s slide over the fiscal cliff.
A White House spokesman said the president would meet House speaker John Boehner and Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell, and Democratic allies Senate majority leader Harry Reid and House minority leader Nancy Pelosi.
The meeting – scheduled for Friday afternoon local time – comes amid bitter partisan exchanges and mounting pessimism over whether a budget deal can be struck.
Before leaving his Hawaiian Christmas vacation, President Obama telephoned congressional leaders to discuss the situation, which could push the US back into recession.
He returned to Washington overnight, but Senator Reid said a deal to avert the $US600 billion package of higher taxes and spending cuts, due to kick in with the New Year, looked unlikely.
With the deadline to solve the latest potential economic crisis in the US rapidly approaching, you have probably heard of the fiscal cliff – but what is it? :: Read the full article »»»»