'Fiscal cliff' efforts in disarray as US lawmakers flee
WASHINGTON (REUTERS) - Efforts to avoid the looming United States (US) "fiscal cliff" were thrown into disarray on Friday with finger-pointing lawmakers fleeing Washington for Christmas vacations even as the year-end deadline for action edged ever closer.
No new negotiations were scheduled between Republicans, congressional Democrats and the White House to reach a deal to prevent a fiscal calamity in 10 days. The White House said President Barack Obama will make a statement at 5pm EST (2pm Singapore time) on Friday on the "fiscal cliff" stand-off.
"How we get there, God only knows," House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner, the top Republican in Congress, told reporters on Friday when asked about a possible comprehensive "fiscal cliff" solution.
Mr Boehner's own "Plan B" option dramatically collapsed in a heap on Thursday night when he failed to rally the support of his fellow House Republicans.