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Obama wants quick bill to head off tax increases

Says he still wants the well-to-do to pay more

Gulf News

WASHINGTON (AP) - President Barack Obama issued a stern summons to congressional leaders on Friday to approve legislation before the year’s end to prevent tax increases on millions of middle class Americans and prevent an expiration of long-term unemployment benefits for the jobless.

One day after, House anti-tax rebels torpedoed Republican legislation because it would raise rates on million-dollar-earners and Obama said he still wants a bill that requires the well-to-do to pay more. “Everybody’s got to give a little bit in a sensible way” to prevent the economy from pitching over a recession-threatening fiscal cliff, he said.

He spoke after talking by phone with House Speaker John Boehner - architect of the failed House bill - and a meeting with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid.

“I still think we can get it done,” Obama said as he struggled to pick up the pieces of weeks of failed negotiations and political maneuvering.