Morning Joe | November 19, 2012
>> all right. budget negotiation are on hold this week as lawmakers head home for the thanksgiving holiday. that's not stopping executives at 40 of the largest publicly traded companies in the u.s. from scaling back their company's operations. and ahead of what could be a devastating combination of tax increases and deep spending cuts. republicans and democrats insist that they are optimistic about the prospects of reaching the deal to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff. but now, house democratic leader nancy pelosi says she won't budge when it comes to tax hikes for the wealthy, putting her directly at odds with house speaker john boehner .
>> could you accept a deal that does not include tax rate increases for the wealthy? we've seen talk about a possible compromise that would leave rates the same but cap deductions for high income earn weers. is that something that's acceptable?
>> not at all?
>> the president made it very clear in the campaign there is not enough. what you just described is a formula and a blueprint for hampering our future. you cannot go forward -- you have to cut some investments. if you cut too many, you are hampering growth, you're hampering education, and investments to the future.
>> andy, we seem to be standoff once again.
>> it's groundhog day , right?
>> it is groundhog day .
>> first of all, i would love to have a job as an elected official. getting a week off again. it's not like there's anything important we need to do.
>> they've been off, how long have they been off?
>> sorry to be sarcastic.
>> no. then they come back and do the deal and then they're off again.
>> if they did the deal i would give them a holiday. i don't know if they're going to do the deal. that's why businesspeople are so up in arms. here we go again. no solution. i thought it seemed like the two sides were getting closer to a deal. not.
>> if the company is on the brink and you've got nancy pelosi and john boehner and everybody still disagreeing, will you go home? i don't understand, why do you go home? if our economy is on the brink and congress can't make a deal?
>> even the language that nancy pelosi just put out there is bad. and i mean, i respect her position. i think it's great that she's sticking to her guns. but i can't stand the fact that these people aren't talking about compromise instead of saying i'm never going to change, i'm never going to move up a the time because that's not the point. the point is getting together and fixing this stuff. it's going to be a little tax, a little bit of a cut, let's do it.
>> boy, mika, i don't want to walk into this, but you combine what nancy poelosi said yesterday, what the president said at the press conference yesterday, very defiant.
>> speaker boehner.
>> and, you know, and john boehner right after the election. i mean, these people, do they get a professional mediator to figure out how to get this done?
>> look, this is how negotiations happen. president is taking --
>> we have no solution. that's how negotiations happened before , steve, and then nothing happened.
>> this has been going on for years.
>> i don't want to be optimistic because i'm not all that optimistic.
>> but let's just be clear. so, you know, we had an opening round of meetings. they staked out their position. yes, the legislators went home. the president went to asia. there's a lot of staff members sitting in washington right now putting together a framework to try to have another meeting the week after thanksgiving and then see where we go from there. i'm not overly optimistic but i don't think we should throw in the towel just yet.
>> believe it when i see it.
>> david, i just don't understand. and it's not like i haven't been there and haven't seen how this works before.
>> you worked with these very people.
>> white can't nancy, who i like, and john, who i like, pick up the phone , talk to each other and work towards a deal? i don't understand -- i really -- this isn't that hard. it's really not.
>> first of all, it's boehner going to be talking to the president about this. and the issue that comes up for me, i think it's pretty clear both in terms of what's being said publicly as you just noted and talking to people who have been meeting with the president behind the screens as i have. the president wants to fight about taxes now and he wants to force this issue about taxes for wealthier people now. he wants to get that done before the end of the year and put off the prospect of broader tax reform which may get into the realm of, a, additional revenue raising and some things that republicans would find palatable if they're going to give a little bit on revenue. what i don't understand is if rates get raised before the end of the year, if that's his position, i'm not sure what he gives in the immediate term. maybe it's on spending cuts to make him get his across the line .
>> you're not going to get tax increases from republicans unless you do entitlement reform and you're going do entitlement reform before the end of the year.
>> the deal they're trying to do is you get something on revenues, maybe it's not exactly what the president wants but something like that. and in return the president gives on entitlement reform. he's not going to get it done by tend of the year in terms of specifics. but you have an over arching framework with some kind of teeth that makes sure it happens in the first half of next year. that's what they are trying to do.
>> change the se squeserred spending cuts to hit national security is hard.