Dan Kildee discusses fiscal cliff negotiations - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Dan Kildee discusses fiscal cliff negotiations

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(11/20/12) - It looks like real fiscal cliff negotiations will be pushed off until December - as lawmakers in Washington take another week off for Thanksgiving recess.

But before they left town, ABC12's Washington Correspondent Ted Fioraliso asked Mid-Michigan's newest congressman, Dan Kildee, for his take on the fiscal cliff.

Congressman-Elect Kildee doesn't take the oath of office until January, but if lawmakers can't come up with a permanent solution to the fiscal cliff now, he'll be right in the thick of it come the new term.

"The consequences aren't played out here at the Capitol, they're played out in communities across the country," he said.

Kildee is keeping a close eye on the fiscal cliff, and how it could impact his constituents in Mid-Michigan. He says going over the cliff would affect all age ranges - from college students with federal loans to adults who receive federal unemployment benefits.

"This is paycheck. This is home budgets that are going to be affected. It's not a theory, it's not some big construction project, this is dollars and sense for everyday working Americans," he said.

Democrats want to raise taxes on households making $250,000 or more to help raise revenue. Republicans want to keep the across-the-board Bush-era tax cuts while closing loopholes in the tax code.

"It won't solve all the big problems in the long term. We've still got a lot of work to do next year," Kildee said.

Kildee's hoping to take a page from his Uncle Dale's book - and reach across the aisle. He says he's already met with some incoming House Republicans.

"There's nothing in the drinking fountain in this building that causes us not to work together. So I think if we intend to, I think we'll be able to do it," he said.

While Kildee will be a new face in Congress, he's spent the past year building relationships on The Hill, including with House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi. Both dispelled rumors that some Democrats think it would be better to go off the fiscal cliff than to fix the problem.

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