HUNTSVILLE, AL (WAFF) - As the nation inches closer to the so-called "fiscal cliff," President Obama is scheduled to return to the white house on Thursday, but the Republican-run House of Representatives does not have a scheduled return date right now.
If no deal is made before January 1, a set of automatic tax increases and budget cuts will go into effect. House members will receive a 48-hour notice to go back to Washington if a vote on the Senate floor appears imminent. One of those house members, Alabama Congressman Mo Brooks, said he is unsure if a deal can get done.
GOP house leaders and President Obama have talked about compromise, but there are clear divisions. The president said he wants all of the George Bush tax cuts to stay in place except for those making more than $250,000. Republicans in the House rejected GOP House Speaker John Boehner's pitch to up that income cut off to a million dollars.
Congressman Brooks said it goes deeper than that, with disagreements over how much in the spending cuts there should be and where they should come from. He added Democrats already have increased taxes, and that the negotiations seem to be at an impasse.
"The Democrats, when they controlled Congress and the White House, they passed a whole slew of taxes. They were smart enough to make them effective after the November election," said Brooks.
Expiration of the Bush tax cuts would mean the average middle class American workers would receive about $150 less per month on their paycheck. Both sides have talked about a possible short-term deal until a broader deal can get done to allow most Americans to keep their tax cuts and to delay spending cuts.