ABC 20 Streaming LiveWeb WatchSpotlight 20Pump PatrolRaw NewsYour Voice News SurveyIn the Kitchen

Forecast

WEDNESDAY: Mostly sunny. High: 65. Winds: Southeast 5-10 mph.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT: Increasing clouds with a few showers -- mainly north of Springfield. Low: 45. Winds: Southeast 10-15 mph.

more »

Advertise with us!

Search Results

The following is an archived video story. The text content of that video story is available below for reference. The original video has been deleted and is no longer available.

Assistant Senate Majority Leader Weighs in on Fiscal Cliff

 The clock is ticking for lawmakers in Washington to figure out how to steer the country away from the so-called fiscal cliff.

If the Republicans and Democrats in Washington can't compromise, economists say the country could fall into another recession.

As a group of bipartisan Congressional leaders met with the president to discuss the pending crisis, Assistant Senate Majority Leader Dick Durbin addressed the matter during a public policy breakfast in Springfield.

"The cliff is our high noon," Durbin said. "Get serious, get it done."

Democrats and Republicans, together with the president, created the fiscal cliff.

It's a self-imposed deadline of December 31. If lawmakers don't act, the Bush-era tax cuts will expire.

That means most Americans will pay more in federal income taxes. Extended unemployment benefits will not be an option. Spending to areas like defense will be cut.

Economists warn all of that could push the country back into recession.

"We start by saying revenue and taxes have to be part of this," Durbin said. "I believe those should be paid by people in the highest income categories."
 
Senate Democrats want to preserve the tax cuts for middle-class families but end breaks for the wealthy.

Republicans say increases are unacceptable. But they're willing to negotiate on deductions.

House Speaker John Boehner was one of four Congressional leaders who met with President Obama behind closed doors Friday.

"I outlined a framework that deals with reforming our tax code and reforming our spending," Boehner said. "I believe the framework I've outlined is consistent with the President's call for a fair and balanced approach."

Durbin recommends coming up with a number and a split between revenue and spending cuts for the next 10 years. Then, he says, Congress should examine the most expensive deduction in the federal tax code: the employers' exclusion of health insurance premiums.

"When an employer pays a percent of your health insurance, you don't pay taxes on it," Durbin said.

Lawmakers have six weeks to reach an agreement to avoid the steep slope.

"I remain optimistic," Boehner said.

The White House is calling Friday's meeting between the president and four top congressional leaders "constructive." Congressional leaders say they're confident they can reach a deal before Christmas.

 
  • WICS :: News - Traffic

    Traffic

    Get up to the minute traffic reports from WICS NewsChannel 20!
  • WICS :: News - Road Trippin News

    Road Trippin News

    Missed a Road Trippin segment that ...
  • WICS :: News - Health Beat

    Health Beat

    Featuring news segment videos about health.
  • WICS :: News - In The Kitchen

    In The Kitchen

    Watch the area's best chefs whip up their tastiest creations. See them in action and get their recipes to try at home. 
  • WICS :: News - Behind The Headlines

    Behind The Headlines

    Get Behind the Headlines commentary with Mark Hyman.
  • WICS :: News - Ready, Set, Shred

    Ready, Set, Shred

    In an exclusive eight-week investigation, ABC Newschannel 20 digs deep into the Springfield police document shredding scandal.
  • WICS :: News - Pay it Forward

    Pay it Forward

    Pay It Forward... because sometimes people need a little extra help.
  • WICS :: News - Ask the Expert

    Ask the Expert

    Do you need expert advice? Here's your chance to ask our experts!
  • WICS :: News - Work Out With 20

    Work Out With 20

    Kickstart your week with a new fitness tip every Monday from ABC Newschannel 20's Natalie Sparacio and the expert instructors at FitClub in Springfield.

  • WICS :: News - Your Voice. Your Future.

    Your Voice. Your Future.

    As the country faces challenges from federal budget issues to jobs and national debt, your voice is critical to the future.
  • WICS :: News - Road Trippin

    Road Trippin

    Come Road Trippin' with us! Check out all the great attractions in your area!
  • WICS :: News - Pump Patrol

    Pump Patrol

    Check out the ABC Newschannel 20's Pump Patrol to find the lowest prices, report low prices and get gas saving tips.

  • WICS :: News - Web Watch

    Web Watch

    Here's where to find the links you hear about on the news.
  • WICS :: News - Spotlight 20

    Spotlight 20

    Local organizations and community leaders tell us about events in central Illinois.
  • WICS :: News - Raw News

    Raw News

    Watch extra news footage, full interviews, and extended stories that didn't make it on air.  "Raw News" may include content that is not suitable for children and is intended for mature audiences only.
  • WICS :: News - On the Farm

    On the Farm

    Whether it's topical segments on what's happening on local farms to commodity prices, we have the world of central Illinois agriculture covered.
  • WICS :: News - Fugitive Files

    Fugitive Files



  • WICS :: News - Crime Stoppers

    Crime Stoppers

    CrimeStoppers needs your help. If you have any information regarding a featured crime or any other criminal act, call (217) 788-8427.
  • WICS :: News - Home Room

    Home Room

    When's the next school board meeting? Where's the basketball game? What's for lunch today? Do we have a snow day tomorrow? We have all the information you need for a successful school year--no pencil or ...
  • WICS :: News - No Text Zone

    No Text Zone

    Texting while driving kills thousands of people each year. Many more are seriously injured.  Keep central Illinois roads safe by taking the "No Text Zone" pledge.
  • WICS :: News - Business News

    Business News

    Stay up-to-date on the biggest business stories from around the nation.
  • WICS :: News - Pet of the Week

    Pet of the Week

    The cutest video you'll see anywhere! You won't be able to resist these adorable friends who need someone to love them.
  • WICS :: News - Cruisin' Illinois

    Cruisin' Illinois

    Get your motor running! Find out about the latest events and activities for central Illinois motorcycle enthusiasts.
  • WICS :: News - Illinois Central

    Illinois Central

    Every week Illinois Central brings you the stories about the people in central Illinois. From our weekly Cruisin' Illinois segment, which features motorcycle culture, to the arts and everything in between, ...
  • WICS :: News - Waste Watch

    Waste Watch

    How are your tax dollars being spent? Waste Watch tracks whether local, state and federal governments are using your money wisely...or wasting it.
  • WICS :: News - Washington Times

    Washington Times

    Politics, Breaking News, US and World News.
  • WICS :: News - Health Care Reform

    Health Care Reform

    The Supreme Court ruling to uphold the Affordable Care Act sparked a new battle. Check here daily for the latest developments, locally and across the country.

more »

Tonight on WICS

10:00 - ABC Newschannel 20 Nightside

Complete Schedule »


WICS Pay It Forward
WICS News Team
Illinois Central
Sunrise Team
WICS Storm Team