Details emerge in fiscal cliff agreement
December 31st, 2012
09:49 PM ET
9 years ago

Details emerge in fiscal cliff agreement

Washington (CNN) – A deal was reached between Congressional leaders and the White House late Monday night, according to a Democratic source.

The agreement brokered by Vice President Joe Biden and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell was later signed off on by House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid during calls with President Barack Obama, said a source familiar with the deal.

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The same source said the plan postpones the sequester by two months, half paid for through tax revenue and half paid for through spending cuts. Half of the spending cuts stems from defense spending and half from non-defense spending.

The individual $5 million exemption level for the estate tax, an element supported by Republicans, will remain. But that cap is indexed to inflation, meaning it will increase every year, according to the same source, an element incorporated at the insistence of moderate Democrats.

Additionally, the “Doc Fix,” payments to doctors who take Medicare patients that the GOP wanted, will continue but will not be paid for by the Affordable Care Act.

The tentative agreement also includes a one year extension of unemployment benefits and will allow income taxes for individuals making $400,000 a year and households making $450,000 to return to the Clinton-era rate of 39.6%.

The deal resolves other outstanding sticking points by including an extension in tax credits for child care and tuition. It also caps itemized deductions, starting at a threshold of $250,000 for individuals and $300,000 for households.

Filed under: Congress • Fiscal Cliff • President Obama
soundoff (95 Responses)
  1. Steve

    Once again, the Dems folded.

    January 1, 2013 01:10 am at 1:10 am |
  2. ngc1300

    So where's the House? Oh yeah, they're out partying.

    January 1, 2013 01:15 am at 1:15 am |
  3. Redeye Dog


    January 1, 2013 01:16 am at 1:16 am |
  4. nlcatter

    obama is a LIAR

    January 1, 2013 01:35 am at 1:35 am |
  5. Floyd from Illinois

    As a compromise, it works. Nobody got everything they wanted, everybody got something.

    Democracy is a sausage-making process.

    January 1, 2013 01:37 am at 1:37 am |
  6. Flagrante Delicto

    This is no deal. The Senate "deal"has no spending cuts of any significance. Just another kick-the-can-down-the-road delay. Politics is the art of delaying decisions until they are no longer relevant.

    January 1, 2013 01:49 am at 1:49 am |
  7. Jon

    Oh, I do love a good cliff-hanger! Last minute votes – such excitement. Of course they can always just say the vote had to be cast before 2013 hits Hawaii (UCT-10) or maybe even at the International Date Line at UTC-12. They have hours left.

    January 1, 2013 01:50 am at 1:50 am |
  8. AG

    Glad to hear this.

    January 1, 2013 01:58 am at 1:58 am |
  9. J

    BREAKING NEWS: country dives over fiscal cliff

    January 1, 2013 02:05 am at 2:05 am |
  10. George Judge

    So Obama and the Dems sold us out again. When will our votes ever make a difference?

    January 1, 2013 02:14 am at 2:14 am |
  11. straitsight

    Why should I be working? I could be on unemployment for 2 or 3 years. No gas to pay for, no insurance to buy, and I could get food stamps for groceries. I would have more money than I get for working after paying for all that. Might even be able to get housing partly paid for and not have any incentive to go get work..

    January 1, 2013 02:17 am at 2:17 am |
  12. rev

    Well it looks like the Republicans were only able to foul the water and not screw the pooch on the entire deal. It's not a perfect deal, but it will keep America from turning into the GOP's "Amerika."

    January 1, 2013 02:18 am at 2:18 am |
  13. FrankChance

    Two months? Good thing this is not a Leap Year.

    January 1, 2013 02:21 am at 2:21 am |
  14. Desmond Emk.

    Obvious a deal was gonna be done congressional stupidity not withstanding

    January 1, 2013 02:22 am at 2:22 am |
  15. edofchattanoogatn

    WELL, WELL, WELL; they finally agreed on something !!!!! It looks like the rich are going to be TAXED out the ying yang; YAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAYAY to that !!!!! The poor disabled people will also be glad that they can still go to the doctor !!!! I salute the Democratic party for their work on this agreement and the Republicans who supported it. TennesseeEd

    January 1, 2013 02:23 am at 2:23 am |
  16. Desmond Emk.

    Obvious a deal was gonna be done, congressional stupidity not withstanding.Vote them out in the next congress elections

    January 1, 2013 02:25 am at 2:25 am |
  17. edofchattanoogatn

    NEXT ON THE AGENDA : Get rid of Automaticv and Semi-automatic weapons in the hands of the public !!!!!!!!!! TennesseeEd

    January 1, 2013 02:26 am at 2:26 am |
  18. KEVIN2121961

    Biden is too cool. He loves playing the game but is completely honest

    January 1, 2013 02:52 am at 2:52 am |
  19. Atravis

    Im extremely dissapointed in our leaders. This is not a game when the welfare of our entire country rides on it. I dont understand? Did they really just kick the can down the road again. Where is the future headed for the generations being born in this country. The children of this year 2012 to the future children born in the US are at a tremendous disadvantage to the rest of the world. What will happen to Social Security? What will happen when the federal reserve continues to devalue the dollar by continuously printing money. Devauling the oh mighty dollar? Like Russia we will ruin our own currency due to the over abundance of printing more and more. The dollar barely can hold its own right now. What about 30 years down the road. When we are long dead the generations following us will be left holding a bag of what??? I dont know but I think by now our world whould learn to accept the differences between world leaders and smaller countries that are subjected to the irreasponsiblity of our current generation. I can only pray the insanity will not continue. How much is too much? Who's watching the federal reserve? Is larger goverment really what we want. I'm not so sure anymore.

    January 1, 2013 04:52 am at 4:52 am |
  20. Name lynn

    obama doesnt need the vice president to help him because everything is in obama hands an them funny looking republicans an the preschoolers white house leaders needs to be potting train because they still wearing pampers

    January 1, 2013 07:46 am at 7:46 am |
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