Obama lobbies big businesses to strike 'balanced' deal with Congress following 'frozen' fiscal cliff talks

Last Updated: Thu, Dec 06, 2012 05:30 hrs

With the ongoing talks between the White House and Congress over a deal to avert the so-called "fiscal cliff" not leading to any fruition till now, US President Obama has turned his focus to the business community.

Obama is now urging attendees at the quarterly meeting of the Business Roundtable to help him lobby Congress for a "balanced" deal that includes tax hikes for the nation's wealthiest earners.

He attempted to win the Business Roundtable to his side of the political argument, outlining his opposition to the GOP proposal and essentially accusing Republicans of holding the global economy hostage.

"I am passionately rooting for your success, because if the companies in this room are doing well, then small businesses and medium-sized businesses up and down the chain are doing well," CBS News quoted Obama, as saying.

According to the report, the president went on to outline his objections to the GOP plan, which proposes to raise revenue by eliminating unspecified tax loopholes and deductions.

"We don't have any objection to tax reform, tax simplification, closing loopholes, closing deductions. But there is a bottom line amount of revenue that is required in order for us to get a real, meaningful deficit reduction plan that hits the numbers that are required. Any formula that says we can't increase tax rates probably only yields about $300-400 billion realistically, and that's well short of the amount of revenue that's needed for a balanced package," he said.

The president, who has recently redoubled his efforts to rebuild a strong relationship with the business world after years of tension, remains locked in a stalemate with House Republicans over averting the so-called "cliff," a series of tax hikes and spending cuts set to go into effect next year, the report said.

Obama insists he will not sign off on a proposal that does not increase tax rates for households earning 250,000 dollars or more per year, while Republicans have repeatedly reiterated their refusal to raise tax rates, it added. (ANI)

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