The Straits Times
Published on Dec 14, 2012

Exasperated US lawmakers push for fiscal cliff deal


WASHINGTON (AFP) - Exasperated United States lawmakers warned on Thursday they were no closer to a deal with the White House to avert severe tax hikes and austerity measures, as talks threatened their Christmas break.

With the US economy lurching toward the so-called "fiscal cliff," House Speaker John Boehner, the top Republican negotiator, again blamed President Barack Obama for the impasse and demanded concessions on spending.

"It's clear that the president is just not serious about cutting spending.

But spending is the problem," Mr Boehner told reporters, insisting that tax increases alone will not resolve the US fiscal crisis.