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WH: Obama Determined To Make ‘Cliff’ Deal

WASHINGTON, (UPI) —  U.S. President Barack Obama is set on finding a “fiscal cliff” deal that will pass Congress, the White House said after Speaker John Boehner’s “Plan B” failed.

“The president will work with Congress to get this done and we are hopeful that we will be able to find a bipartisan solution quickly that protects the middle class and our economy,” spokesman Jay Carney said in a statement after House Republican leaders abruptly canceled a vote on Boehner’s fallback bill Thursday night after failing in an emergency meeting to rally enough votes for passage.

Conservatives refused to support Boehner’s proposal to let taxes to rise on incomes above $1 million a year, lawmakers said.

“I want something that treats everybody fairly. I think everybody needs to be protected, and I don’t think the bill does that,” Rep. Mick Mulvaney, R-S.C., who opposed Plan B, told The New York Times.

After pulling his bill, Boehner, an Ohio Republican, unexpectedly disbanded the House until after Christmas.

“The House did not take up the tax measure today because it did not have sufficient support from our members to pass,” Boehner said in a statement Thursday night.

He then put the onus on Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., to take the next step

“Now it is up to the president to work with Senator Reid on legislation to avert the fiscal cliff,” Boehner’s statement said.

Later, Boehner said work would continue on the budget despite the Plan B setback.

He did not say if he had plans to meet with the president.

Boehner said House members, “if needed,” were prepared to return to Washington.

The Wall Street Journal reported Friday that Boehner said he was not concerned that his Plan B failure put his position as House speaker at risk.

After conservative Republicans joined with Democrats in rejecting Plan B, Boehner said, “They weren’t taking that out on me. They were dealing with a perception that somebody might accuse them of raising taxes.”

The Senate was scheduled to be in session for a few hours Friday afternoon before members were to leave town until Dec. 27.

If Congress and Obama cannot work out and pass a deal by Dec. 31, more than a half-trillion dollars in tax increases and spending cuts will go into effect Jan. 1.

UPI - United Press International, Inc.

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