Weekend in politics: ‘Fiscal cliff’ uncertainty, NRA press conference, and more

Phil Pruitt

The House has left town after Speaker John Boehner failed to rally support Thursday evening for his “Plan B” backup plan, which would have allowed tax increases for incomes of $1 million and up.

“Plan B” was Boehner’s proposal for what should happen if Republicans and the White House fail to reach a deal for avoiding the tax increases and deep spending cuts that automatically go into effect Jan. 1.

No fiscal cliff meetings have been publicly scheduled for Friday or the weekend, but there’s always a chance President Barack Obama, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid and Boehner will sit down together in the next few days – if not Friday.

Meanwhile, the House could reconvene Dec. 27, and the Senate already is expected to be in session that day.

The deadline for reaching a deal to avoid going over the cliff: Jan. 1. There’s still time for Washington to act, but not much.

The consequences of not reaching a deal: Some economists say the economy could slip back into recession.

The National Rifle Association has scheduled what it bills as a “major news conference” Friday morning in Washington. It will be the group’s first public event since the shooting last Friday at Sandy Hook Elementary School that left 20 children and six staff members dead.

The NRA released a statement Tuesday saying it is “prepared to offer meaningful contributions to help make sure this never happens again.” Friday‘s press conference takes place on the same day that memorial services and moments of silence are being held across the country.

Also worth noting on Friday: The Senate continues work on the $60.4 billion Superstorm Sandy aid package, and there will be a memorial service at the Washington National Cathedral for Sen. Daniel Inouye who died Monday at age 88. President Obama and Vice President Joe Biden are expected to speak.

And then there is this: The Obamas are hoping to get out of town soon and head to the president’s home state of Hawaii for the holidays, but their departure appears to be on hold because of the fiscal cliff hang-up.

Sources: Yahoo! News’ The Ticket, Yahoo! News reporter Olivier Knox, Associated Press, Reuters.