Reid immediately put the onus on McConnell to suggest changes to that base bill so it could win backing from Republican senators.

“At President Obama’s request, I am readying a bill for a vote by Monday that will prevent a tax hike on middle-class family income up to $250,000, and that will include the additional, critical provisions outlined by President Obama. In the next twenty-four hours, I look forward to hearing any good-faith proposals Senator McConnell has for altering this bill,” Reid said in a statement Friday evening.

Both Reid and McConnell sounded hopeful they could craft an agreement over the next 24 to 36 hours, although Reid said he was under no illusion that members of his caucus would accept it without complaint…

Senate sources say McConnell will likely demand the threshold for extending the Bush-era income tax rates be set at $400,000 for family income, instead of the $250,000 level Obama made a centerpiece of his re-election campaign. Extending the 35-percent tax rate on inheritances — along with the exemption for estates under $5 million per spouse — is another priority of Republicans. The rate will jump to 55 percent and the exemption will drop to $1 million at the beginning of next year.