Originally published on Thu December 27, 2012 12:18 pm
Even as Air Force One was about to land in suburban Maryland this morning — bringing President Obama back from his vacation in Hawaii to resume negotiations aimed at avoiding the so-called fiscal cliff of automatic tax increases and spending cuts — Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid was on the floor of the Senate warning that a dive off that cliff seems inevitable.
There are rumors of progress in Washington, DC, in the talks over how to move forward on spending and taxes, but House speaker John Boehner says Republicans have a "Plan B" just in case. We hear the latest on the fiscal cliff talks from Jill Jackson of CBS News.
"We're building a budget assuming everybody works their problems out in the best interest of the nation." That's how Stan Marshburn, outgoing director of Washington State's Office of Financial Management is planning for the fiscal cliff.
He says we're likely to suffer either way. If we go over the cliff, we can expect 50 percent cut to state military spending. To avoid the cliff, federal lawmakers might agree to reduce Medicaid spending -- another precious source of federal money.
Marshburn tells Ross his biggest concern is consumer confidence, since Washington gets so much of its money from sales tax. He says reduced consumer spending could impact Washington's economy 10 times more than the actual fiscal cliff itself.
It’s Friday — time to talk over the week’s news with Joni Balter, Eli Sanders and Knute Berger. Another week, another candidate for Seattle mayor as state Senator Ed Murray says he's in. Washington state ushered in history-making laws on gay marriage and marijuana. And in Washington, DC, Congress remained perched on the fiscal cliff. What stories caught your attention this week? Call us at 206.543.5869 or write to firstname.lastname@example.org.