Sen. Harry Reid Says 'US Headed Over Fiscal Cliff'

Drastic budget cuts and tax hikes are five days away as looming fiscal cliff cutoff date approaches.
2:41 | 12/27/12

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Transcript for Sen. Harry Reid Says 'US Headed Over Fiscal Cliff'
and to the growing storm breeing in washington. After senate majority leader harry reid warned today that the government could per happen goes of that fiscal cliff. Now, just five days until everyone's taxes go up in this country, how much for the average american family? Here's our chief white house correspondent jon karl tonight. Reporter: President obama cut short his hawaii vacation, running back to washington, where storm clouds, real storm clouds, are gathering over the capitol. Instead of deal making, it's name calling. The top democrat in the senate, accusing the republican speaker of the house of running a dictatorship. They say they haven't given up, but it sure sounds that way. I don't know time wise how it can happen now. Here we are, once again, at the end of the year, staring at a crisis we should have dealt with literally months ago. Reporter: Vice president biden made a rare appearance in the senate, not to negotiate -- I do. Congratulations, senator. Reporter: But to swear in a new democratic senator from hawaii. A vote the white house will need if the senate ever gets around to voting on a plan to avert the fiscal cliff. In the house, even less going on. The only hopeful words, from the house chaplain, looking for some divine help. As this chamber lies silent, still, we pray for hope. Reporter: Without agreement soon, nearly everybody takes a hit. A schoolteacher with two kids and a salary of $43,000, for example, will face a tax hike of more than $3,000. Members of congress helped get us into this mess and they'll pay, too, with incomes of $174,000, they'll pay some $7,500 more in taxes. As for the super rich? Well, consider basketball phenom LeBRON JAMES. He makes about $53 million. Could see his taxes go up by more than $2.4 million next year alone. And it's not just taxes. ON JANUARY 1st, UNEMPLOYMENT Benefits expire for some 2 million people. We're joins here in new york by jon karl. Chief white house correspondent, like the ring to it with your name. A lot of people are watching, saying, stop messing around in washington. That's a lot of tax money at stake here. Reporter: And this would be the first big tax hike we've seen in more than 20 years, david. There's a lot of talk about a potential meeting at the white house. The president came all the way back from hawaii, cut short the vacation, left the family back. No meeting scheduled yet but i would expect you will see congressional leaders sometime over the next 24, 36 hours, come to the white house one last ditch effort to at least stop these tax hikes from going into effect and extend the unemployment benefits. Butguarantee. And some speculation that meeting could be tomorrow. Reporter: Yes.

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