Transcript for Obama: 'Committed to Solving Fiscal Challenges'
The president about to address the nation from the White House the first time since his victory on election night. And is subject is going to be a deadline 53 days from now. On something that will affect every family in this country it is called a fiscal cliff everyone's taxes set to go up on New Year's Day. Plus 650 billion dollars in spending cuts projected to cost the average American family 3500. Dollars more. The clock is ticking unless the president and Republicans do something they couldn't do before find common ground I want to bring an ABC's White House correspondent Jake Tapper -- is there in the room Jake. -- Diane President Obama campaigned on the idea that those bush tax cuts on wealthier Americans making more than 200000 dollars a year. Should be allowed. To expire at the end of the year -- so. In addition to President Obama extending a hand to Republicans in congress and you'll hear that he invited Republican and democratic leaders to come to the White House next week to negotiate on this. You'll hear an affirmation of this position because the president believes that the American people are with him he campaigned on this issue. And of course he won yeah. The house speaker John Boehner told you yesterday that those tax hikes are unacceptable but he also signaled that the fiscal cliff is there and they have to come to some kind of deal and he knows how dire it would be. To fall off that cliff we should point out that the president is in the east room of the White House. That's right he's got -- an audience of middle class families the White House has -- also have a group. -- stands behind him as -- here they come. President will call for a balanced approach. So they -- try to negotiate with congress last year including both spending cuts and tax increases. And again we will be seeing the president for the first time since that victory speech he made. Except for that one visit to his campaign staff yes. On Wednesday afternoon in Chicago where we saw the president much more emotional than we've ever seen him before tearing up. Is he told all -- young campaign workers how proud he is of the work they've done reminding him of his days as -- community organizer in Chicago. And what he expects from them in the future -- saying he expected great things. Jake tell us a little bit about who's in that room right now. Well it's a bunch of supporters a collection of individuals middle class families. That he considers himself to be fighting -- About. Right. There is okay. Well good afternoon everybody. -- on the campaign trail have had a chance to get little -- It's time to get back to work and there is plenty of work to do. As I said on Tuesday night the American people voted for action not politics as usual. You elected us to focus on your -- not hours. And in that spirit I've invited leaders of both parties to the White House next week. So we can start to build consensus around the challenges that we can only solve together. And I also intend to bring in business and labor and civic leaders from all across the country here to Washington. To get their ideas and input as well. At a time when our economy still recovering from the Great Recession. Are top priority has to be jobs and world. That's the focus of the plan. I talked about her. -- -- plan to reward small businesses and manufacturers the great jobs here not overseas. The plan to give people the chance to get the education and training that businesses are looking for right now. It's a plan to make sure -- comfort. Is a global leader in research and technology. And clean energy which will attract new companies and high wage jobs to America. The plan to -- folks back to work including our veterans. Rebuilding our roads our bridges and other infrastructure. And it's a plan to reduce our deficit in a balanced. And responsible way. Our work is made that much more urgent because at the end of this year. We face a series of deadlines that require us to make major decisions about how to pay our deficit -- Decisions that we'll have a huge impact on the economy and the middle class both now and in the future. Last year our work -- Democrats and Republicans to cut a trillion dollars worth of spending -- we just couldn't afford. I intend to work would both parties to do more. And that includes making reforms that will bring down the cost of health care so we can strengthen programs like Medicaid and Medicare for the long haul. But as I've said before. We can't just cut our -- to prosperity. If we're serious about reducing the depths. We have to combine spending cuts -- revenue up and that means asking the wealthiest Americans to pay a little more in taxes. That's how. -- That's how we did it in the 1990s when Bill Clinton was president. That's how we can reduce the deficit while still making the investments we need to build a strong middle class and strong -- That's the only way we can still afford to train our workers or help our -- pay for college. Or make sure that good jobs and clean energy your high tech manufacturing. Don't end up in countries like China. Already -- put forward a detailed plan that allows us to make these investments. While reducing our deficit by four trillion dollars over the next Beckett. -- want to be clear I'm not -- to every detail of my plant. I'm open to compromise. I'm open to new ideas. -- committed to solving our fiscal challenges. But I refuse to accept any approach that isn't balanced. I'm not gonna ask students and seniors and middle class families. To pay down the entire deficit while people like me making over 250000. Dollars. Are asked to pay a dime more in taxes. How about -- -- -- -- -- point out this was a central question during the election. It was debated over and over again on Tuesday night we found out that the majority of Americans agree -- my approach. And that includes Democrats -- -- -- and a lot of Republicans across the country as well as. Independent economists. And budget experts that's -- -- reduce the deficit. -- be balanced approach. So our job now -- to get a majority in congress to reflect the will of the American -- And I believe we can get them Jordan. I was encouraged to hear speaker Boehner agree that tax revenue has to be part of this equation so I look forward to hearing -- ideas when -- see you next week. -- make one final point that every American needs to hear. Right now if congress fails to come to an agreement on an overall deficit reduction package by the end of the year. Everybody's taxes will automatically go up on January 1. Everybody's. Including the 98% of Americans who make less than 250000. Dollars a year. That makes no sense there would be bad for the economy. And would hit families that are already struggle to make ends meet. Fortunately we shouldn't need long negotiations or drama to -- that part of the problem. -- there may be disagreement in congress over whether or not to raise taxes on folks making over 250000 miles a year. Nobody. Not Republicans not Democrats want taxes to go up for folks making under 250000 dollars a year. So let's not wait. Even as we're negotiating a broader deficit reduction package. Let's expand the middle class tax cuts right now. Let's do that right now. That one step that one step would give millions of families 98%. Of Americans. And 97%. Of small businesses. The certain to -- that they need. Going into the new year. It would immediately take a huge chunk of the economic uncertainty. Off the table. That'll lead to new jobs and faster growth business -- -- that consumers. -- Agassi. A big tax increase don't know that. Most small businesses won't see -- tax increase and so a lot of the -- invigorating about that will be removed. In fact the senate has already passed. A bill doing exactly that's all we need is action from the house. I've got banned braves signed the bill right right. Right. -- The American people understand that we're gonna have -- differences and disagreements in the months to come to get that. But on Tuesday they say it loud and clear that they won't tolerate dysfunction. There won't tolerate politicians who view compromise as a dirty word. Not when so many Americans are still out of work. Now when so many families and small business owners are still struggling to pay the bills. The American people are looking for his cooperation. -- looking for consensus. They're looking for common cents. Most of all they want action. -- and to deliver for them in my second term and I expect to find willing partners in both parties to make that happen. So let's get to work thank you very much of. Yeah. -- Vice president by his side saying let. We're inviting members of congress -- White House meeting next week things open to compromise -- the -- is -- drawing a line on taxes. No question about it was that it would not accept. When did not include. The tax increase on the wealthy of course yeah -- told you he would not accept those tax increases on the wealthy false name to see the president -- that comment. From house -- installed. He's on the from the house people who was he said he's open to new tax revenues -- -- to actually increase. And talking about the fact that he's got the pen ready to sign a bill that confidence that he had in that room let's bring in White House correspondent Jake Tapper once again -- Well Diane you heard the president challenged congress he's ready -- sign. That tax thanks to tax cut extension for those who make under 200000 dollars a year ready to sign it. Right now when he made it very clear he campaigned on this issue and he won. He expects congress to follow the will of the people will see how that goes in the coming week. Us president clearly thinks -- has a strong position right now thank you --
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