Let's Make a Deal: Three Days (and Counting) Until the Fiscal Cliff


Monty Hall, where are you when we need you the most?

T-minus three days before the nation's tax rates blow up and there's no sign of a deal.

After huddling at the White House Friday, political leaders from both side of the debate trying to avoid the dreaded fiscal cliff walked away wih no deal in hand. President Barack Obama told reporters that he was "moderately optimistic" for a deal after meting with Democratic Senate Majortiy Leader Harry Reid, Republican Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, Republican House Speaker John Boehner and Democratic House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi.

Congress was supposed to use this weekend to discuss a cut-and-paste temporary solution to avoid going over the cliff—a combination of higher taxes and wholesale government spending cuts set to take effect on Jan. 1.

With the New Year's deadline looming, an average American family earning $50,000 to $75,000 faces the possibility of a $2,400 tax increase.

Bloomberg reports that among the theories of how to avoid the cliff, Obama will propose a scaled-back package:

"Obama will likely renew tax cuts for the middle class, extend unemployment insurance benefits, prevent cuts to Medicare reimbursements to doctors and stop an expansion of the alternative minimum tax."