Fox Business – President Barack Obama is not ready to accept a new offer from the Republican leader of the U.S. House of Representatives to raise taxes on top earners in exchange for major cuts in entitlement programs, a source said late Saturday.
The shape and details of John Boehner’s offer were uncertain Saturday night, as was the exact reason the president was prepared to reject it.
The source said Obama sees the offer made on Friday by U.S. House Speaker Boehner as a sign of progress, but simply believes it is not enough and there is much more to be worked out before Obama can reciprocate.
Tax rates and entitlements are the two most difficult issues in the so-far unproductive negotiations to avert the “fiscal cliff” of steep tax hikes and spending cuts set for the new year unless Congress and the president reach a deal to avoid them.
The Boehner offer is the first significant sign of a shift in the Republican insistence that low tax rates set to expire on Dec. 31 be extended for all taxpayers, and comes at some risk to the speaker.