The President offerred little new news in his press conference remarks on the fiscal cliff this afternoon at the White House, although he tried to assure the press the internal debate was hopeful about reaching a deal. He note Americans shouldn't hold their breath, for Congress will use ever last second they have before the deadline to reach an agreement.
The President said, "An agreement to prevent this New Year tax hike is in site, but is not done. We are hopeful that Congress can get it done, but it's not done...We emphasize to congress and members of both parties to understand, this is a pressing concern on people's minds."
President Obama lamented the means by which the deal will have to be reached, particularly as the pressing and tense deadline does not allow for well-thought out, long-term solutions to the nation's fiscal woes. In his remarks, the President continued, "My preference would have been to solve all these problems in the context of a larger agreement...the solves our deficit problems in a balanced and responsible way...Maybe we can solve this problem in stages; we're going to solve this problem in several steps."
In a nation of over 300 million, with complexities reaching far beyond some community pot allocated to a yearly parade, it's shocking the nation's leaders have procrastinated these conversations, so stubbornly resisting agreement in the name of the political game. Short-term solutions to monetary and fiscal concerns are not necessarily sustainable, and retroactively fixing the missteps of this last minute deal could have longstanding, heavily damaging consequences from nuclear families to the global economy.
President Obama emphasized the need to produce sustainable solutions to budgetary problems, exploring responsible and strategic means to cut spending at the lowest opportunity cost to government programs' efficacy, and close the loopholes and deductions that allow tax profits to slip from government grasp.