On Thursday, with the House out of session, White House congressional liaison Rob Nabors trekked to Capitol Hill and delivered a firm message: We aren’t moving.
In a meeting with leadership staff, Nabors reiterated the administration’s hard line that tax rates on top earners must go up, according to Republican sources with knowledge of the meeting. The White House is also insisting that Congress give it power to raise the debt limit on its own.
Furthermore, in a development that could signal a step closer to the fiscal cliff, Nabors said the White House’s offer stands on mandatory spending on entitlement programs, the sources said.
But another source familiar with the discussion offered a conflicting take, saying Nabors repeated that Obama isn’t wedded to every detail of his plan. Nabors also conveyed that, once Republicans move on rates, “they can get a deal very quickly,” the source said.