After a ‘fiscal cliff’ deal, what next?

After a ‘fiscal cliff’ deal, what next?

By , Published: December 31 | Updated: Wednesday, January 2, 1:16 PM

The “fiscal cliff” was designed by Washington for Washington — it was intended to set up a scenario so severe that the president and Congress would, at last, have to take on the nation’s major tax and spending problems. Instead, lawmakers again found a way to sidestep many of the prickliest issues and in the process set up other, potentially more severe, showdowns in the new year.

The Senate approved a deal with the White House early Tuesday morning that would spare the middle class from an income tax increase, extending tax breaks first enacted under President George W. Bush for individuals making less than $400,000 and couples making less than $450,000.

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