81
      Monday
      90 / 68
      Tuesday
      83 / 65
      Wednesday
      86 / 61

      President says immediate action needed on fiscal cliff


      President Barack Obama says "the hour for immediate action is here" on a deal to avert the fiscal cliff.


      The president says he remains "optimistic" that an agreement can be reached in Congress before a looming year-end deadline to avoid tax increases and spending cuts.


      If Congress can't reach a deal, the president says Congress should allow a vote on a basic package that would preserve tax cuts for middle-class Americans while extending unemployment benefits for the long-term jobless and working toward a foundation for a broader deal.


      The president says an hourlong meeting Friday with congressional leaders was "good and constructive."


      Senate leaders say they hope to reach a compromise that could be presented to lawmakers by Sunday, little more than 24 hours before the deadline.

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