House Republicans Submit ‘Fiscal Cliff’ Counter Proposal

BY Cassie M. Chew  December 3, 2012 at 4:49 PM EDT

In the latest move in negotiations toward avoiding what has been termed the “fiscal cliff,” Republicans, in a letter to President Obama, rejected a request to sign off on legislation that would generate $1.6 trillion in new tax revenue as part of the plan to reduce the country’s $16 trillion national debt.

Instead, the letter, signed by Majority Leader John Boehner, is asking for a reform proposal that seeks almost $800 billion in Medicaid cuts over the next ten years along with reforms to Medicaid.

“These reforms are, in our view, absolutely essential to addressing the true drivers of our debt, and we will continue to support and advance them,” the Dec. 3 letter stated.

The letter asks President Obama to revisit a proposal introduced by Erskine Bowles, the co-chair of Obama’s deficit commission, that features new revenue generated by closing loopholes and deductions and that would cut more than $900 billion in mandatory spending and another $300 billion in discretionary spending.

Monday NewsHour senior correspondent Gwen Ifill will speak with Bowles about the fiscal cliff negotiations and whether Congress can strike a deal in the the next few weeks.

Read more on the fiscal cliff in this primer.