Washington moves another day closer to the "fiscal cliff" with no resolution in sight.
No face-to-face meetings between the White House and Republican leaders are scheduled for today to work on a deal to avert the potentially devastating spending cuts and tax increases that will take effect in January if Congress fails to act.
President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner did speak by telephone on Wednesday, raising hopes that negotiations could begin again soon.
On Thursday, the president will meet with a middle-class family in a northern Virginia suburb to highlight the importance of resolving the fiscal cliff dispute.
The president's chief negotiator, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner, indicated Wednesday that the administration was sticking to its guns and was "absolutely" prepared to go "over the cliff" if Republicans won't accept tax hikes on the wealthiest Americans as part of a deal.
A new AP poll showed some support for the White House position, with 48 percent of those surveyed saying the Bush era tax cuts should expire for those earning over $250,000 and continue for everyone else, and 32 percent saying they should continue for all Americans.
And then there is this: President Obama and his family will flip the switch for the 90th annual lighting of the National Christmas Tree on Thursday afternoon in a ceremony hosted by actor Neil Patrick Harris and featuring performances by Kenneth "Babyface" Edmonds, Ledisi, Jason Mraz, James Taylor and the band The Fray.