(CNN) – Sen. Jeff Sessions, a Republican from Alabama who serves on the Senate Budget Committee, said Congress has been left in the dark on the process of on-going budget negotiations.
Sessions told CNN's Ashleigh Banfield appearing on "OutFront" he knows "almost nothing" about the negotiations between the White House and House Speaker John Boehner to find common ground to avoid the looming fiscal crisis.
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When asked what he knows about the negotiations, Sessions said "very little" adding that the only information he knows comes from sources who told him "speaker was disappointed and things were not moving forward."
Lawmakers in Washington have until the end of the year to reach a deal on how to tame the nation's growing debt or a series of automatic federal spending cuts and tax rate hikes will go into place, risking another economic recession.
While both sides agree that revenue must be raised in order to keep the fiscal crisis at bay, the sticking point is a means to generate it. Obama and many Democrats believe tax rates should be allowed to go up on wealthier individuals and stay at the current rates for those making less than $250,000 per year. Republicans generally advocate for allowing the current rates to extend for all tax brackets and push to closing tax loopholes and limit deductions to generate revenue.
"I really think the classic understanding of the way Congress should operate is being undermined because we're not having committees; we're not having amendments; we're not having votes; we're not having debates; we're just sitting here waiting for the president and the speaker to tell us what to do, apparently," he said, adding that the ones losing in the "secret process" are the American people.
But while a deal remains out of sight, progress also appears to have been made earlier this week. Obama and Boehner spoke by phone Tuesday after House Republican leaders sent a counter-offer on a deal to avoid the fiscal cliff. The Republicans' proposal comes after the Obama administration sent a proposal to Boehner on Monday.