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Obama cuts vacation short as 'fiscal cliff’ looms

By The Associated Press

This article was published December 26, 2012 at 6:36 a.m.


President Barack Obama speaks as first lady Michelle Obama listens during a visit with members of the military and their families in Anderson Hall at Marine Corp Base Hawaii on Tuesday, Dec. 25, 2012, in Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii. The first family is in Hawaii for a holiday vacation.

— With a yea-end deadline looming before the economy goes over the so-called fiscal cliff, President Barack Obama is cutting short his traditional Christmas holiday in Hawaii, planning to leave for Washington on Wednesday evening.

Obama was expected to arrive in Washington early Thursday, the White House said late Tuesday. First lady Michelle Obama and the couple’s two daughters are scheduled to remain in Hawaii until Jan. 6.

In the past, the president’s end-of-the-year holiday in his native state had stretched into the new year. The first family left Washington last Friday night.

Congress was expected to return to Washington on Thursday. Before he departed for Hawaii, Obama told reporters he expected to be back in the capital this week.

Without action by Obama and Congress, automatic budget cuts and tax increases are set to begin in January, which many economists say could send the country back into recession. So far, the president and congressional Republicans have been unable to reach agreement on any alternatives.

Lawmakers have expressed little but pessimism for the prospect of an agreement coming before Jan. 1. On Sunday, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison, R-Texas, said she expects any action in the waning days of the year to be “a patch because in four days we can’t solve everything.”

With the collapse last week of House Speaker John Boehner’s plan to allow tax rates to rise on million-dollar-plus incomes, lawmakers were increasingly worried that no deal can be reached.


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Jackabbott says... December 26, 2012 at 9:23 a.m.

This guy has been on vacation for the last 4 years. A great campaigner but he has no idea on how to govern. We just went through 12 years of dark ages now another 8 of the same old, same old.

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cliffcarson says... December 26, 2012 at 12:08 p.m.

It appears to me that the rut across the road was dug by the GOP. And everything points to a continued four years of Republicans punishing the country for not voting their beloved crooks into both the White House and into a majority into the Senate.
I believe the best thing Obama can do is by Presidential Directive extend the deadline to January 31st to give time for a compromise and at the same time go on National TV telling America that he did this to spare them a tax increase while also mentioning that the Republican Stonewalling was done to spare the Richest Among us a Tax increase and to heck with the public.
Finally Obama needs to ask middle America to remember this in 2014 on election day. The message to America should be "The Republican Party is not your Friend - they exist to further enrich the 1% and their action on this Fiscal Cliff is living proof of that fact".

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GAITOR says... December 26, 2012 at 2:02 p.m.

The Liar in Cheif has stalled working on a real compromise since day one. He welcomes the Fiscal Cliff, so he can blame it on the GOP, just as he has blamed everything else he has or hasn't done for the past four years on Bush.

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JIMBOB47 says... December 26, 2012 at 2:29 p.m.

Other than Eleanor Roosevelt, this woman is the ugliest First Lady we've ever had. The least she could do for our military is put on some makeup and a decent dress! What a pig..!

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FreeSpiritMan says... December 26, 2012 at 3:17 p.m.

Jackabbott,Gaitor,Jimbob47........ but he IS the potus for 4 more years and then the tickets for potus wil be Hillary Clinton/Elizbeth Warren vs Sara Palin/Machell Bachman the haves vs the have nots, and I don't mean wealth, I mean brains. By the end of Clinton/Warren administration the GOP will be small enough to drown in the bathtub. Oh, my where have we heard that slogan before? You three guys can go stick your heads in the sand with your backsides in the air, but you will miss seeing the world pass you by.

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