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Senate GOP Leader Calls On Dems To Spell Out Cuts

"The longer the White House slow-walks this process the closer our economy gets to the fiscal cliff," said Boehner.

Earlier, Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell was somewhat more critical in remarks of his own.

"The president seems to think that if all he talks about are taxes, and that's all reporters write about, somehow the rest of us will magically forget that government spending is completely out of control and that he himself has been insisting on balance," he said on the Senate floor.

He highlighted several government programs as examples of what he said was wasteful spending.

"A few weeks ago, Senator (Tom) Coburn issued a study that showed taxpayers are funding Moroccan pottery classes, promoting shampoo and other beauty products for cats and dogs and a video game that allows them to relive prom night," McConnell said. "Get this: Taxpayers also just spent $325,000 on a robotic squirrel named RoboSquirrel."

The two sides have presented rival initial offers in the cliff negotiations.

Obama's plan would raise $1.6 trillion in revenue over 10 years, in part by raising tax rates on incomes over $200,000 for individuals and $250,000 for couples. He has recommended $400 billion in spending cuts over a decade.

He also is seeking extension of the Social Security payroll tax cut due to expire on Jan. 1, a continuation in long-term unemployment benefits and steps to help hard-pressed homeowners and doctors who treat Medicare patients.

The White House summary noted that Obama last year signed legislation to cut more than $1 trillion from government programs over a decade, and was proposing $600 billion in additional savings from benefit programs.

It also noted that the health care law that he signed into law showed savings of $100 billion. Much or all of that funding came from Medicare, even though Obama's aides insisted during his successful campaign for re-election that he had not made any cuts in it.

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