Will Congress prevent country from going over 'fiscal cliff?' - FOX 13 News

Will Congress prevent country from going over 'fiscal cliff?'

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President Obama has told leaders of both parties to iron out a deal as soon as possible. President Obama has told leaders of both parties to iron out a deal as soon as possible.
TAMPA (FOX 13) -

On Friday President Barack Obama appeared to be speaking directly to Congress during a press conference on the so-called "fiscal cliff."

"The hour for immediate action is here," the President said. "It is now."

Saturday he took his case to the American people.

"For the past couple months, I've been working with people in both parties - with the help of business leaders and ordinary Americans - to come together around a plan to grow the economy and shrink our deficits," explained President Obama.

In his weekly address the President's message centered on the impending "fiscal cliff" and the lack of a compromise between lawmakers on both sides of the aisle in Washington DC.

The average American would face a $3,400 tax increase if Congress chooses to do nothing. That figure would cause a significant financial strain on many families.

"I'll have to cut back," said Henry, a Tampa resident. "I'm not going to be able to go out to dinner as much and so forth."

During Saturday's GOP address Republican Senator Roy Blunt of Missouri painted a bleak picture as well.

"Economists not representing either political party have continually warned that going over the so-called fiscal cliff will lead to devastating job losses at a time when American families and small business owners are still struggling to get back on their feet," Blunt said.

That type of news is unacceptable here in the Bay area, especially as the housing market is just starting to rebound.

"It's consistent with other decisions that politicians in Washington don't seem to be able to make in a timely manner," said Pat Haynie of Tampa.

Saturday President Obama seemed confident both sides will eventually get the job done on time.

"Leaders in Congress are working on a way to prevent this tax hike on the middle class," he said. "I believe we may be able to reach an agreement that can pass both houses in time."

Many Americans who can't afford a tax hike are hoping he's right.

"This problem could be solved if they both got together," added Brooksville resident David Guzik.

Teetering on the edge of a cliff is certainly no fun for anyone.

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