Obama Says Debt-Cutting Deal Can Be Reached Soon - Spokane, North Idaho News & Weather KHQ.com

Obama Says Debt-Cutting Deal Can Be Reached Soon

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WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama says he believes that members of both parties can reach a framework on a debt-cutting deal before Christmas.
    
Obama was joined by about a dozen middle-class Americans who have raised concerns about their taxes going up at the end of the year.
    
He says lawmakers face important deadlines in the coming weeks but the voices of the American people need to be a part of the debate.
    
Obama says we need to "approach this problem with the middle-class in mind."
    
The president is urging the public to pressure Congress through social media, pointing to (hashtag)My2K on Twitter - a reference to the estimated $2,200 tax increase a typical middle-class family of four would see if the Bush tax cuts expire.

    
Obama, Romney to meet for lunch tomorrow

    
WASHINGTON (AP) - A private lunch at the White House tomorrow will be the first meeting between President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney since their last debate.
    
Obama had promised in his victory speech earlier this month that he would engage with Romney following their bitter campaign, and that he would consider Romney's ideas.
    
Aides to Obama say they reached out to Romney's team shortly before Thanksgiving to start working on a date for the meeting.
    
The two men will meet in the White House's private dining room, with no press coverage expected.
    
In the days after his loss, Romney told top donors that the president was re-elected because of the "gifts" Obama had provided to blacks, Hispanics and young voters. Many Republican officials, eager to move on quickly after the loss, disputed Romney's comments and urged the party to focus on being more inclusive.
    
While he's in Washington, according to a former campaign aide, Romney will also meet with former running mate Paul Ryan -- who's back on Capitol Hill, involved in negotiations to avert the automatic spending cuts and tax increases set to take effect in January.
 

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