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Organized Labor Described As “Bullish” after Attending Meeting With Re-Elected President Obama/Say Obama Backs Them On ‘Fiscal Cliff’

Published Wednesday, November 14, 2012 10:00 am
by National Labor Wire Services

(WASHINGTON) – National AFL-CIO President Richard Trumka and a host of Labor Leaders met with Re-Elected President Obama yesterday (Tuesday, November 13th) at the White House in Washington and came away afterward saying the President remains committed to preserving Tax Cuts for Middle-Class Families. 

The Labor Leaders also said Obama is committed to the Wealthy paying their Fair Share in Taxes and took the time to outline for them his plans for a Public Campaign to apply Republican Lawmakers to comply.

In a sign of support for Organized Labor, the President chose to meet first with Union Leaders a day before meeting with a number of CEOs from Companies such as American Express, General Electric, the Ford Motor Company and PepsiCo. 

After an hour-long meeting with Obama and his top Economic Advisers, the Labor Leaders emerged to say they were united with the President’s plans on how to avert the so-called Fiscal Cliff, as well as plans that would prevent further financial hardships next year.

“It was a very, very positive meeting and we are very, very committed to making sure the Middle Class and Workers don't end up paying the tab for a party that we didn’t go to and the President is committed to that as well,” Trumka said.  “The President, like we are, is committed to preserving the Tax Breaks for the Middle Class and making sure Rich People pay their Fair Share.”

At issue is the best way to handle the looming Fiscal Cliff - an Economically Toxic Blend of Tax Hikes, Spending Cuts and End of Long-Term Unemployment Benefits.

The President campaigned on a vow to extend Bush-Era Tax Cuts that chiefly benefit Families making below $250,000 a year, while letting Rates Rise on Income above that. Republicans want to extend all the Rate Reductions.

Obama and his Political Foes are also looking for a way to avert the so-called Sequester - cuts of $1.2 trillion over 10 years from Domestic and Military Programs, triggered by Congress's failure to reach a Debt-Cutting Deal last year.

Going over the cliff could cause another Recession, experts say.

After the meeting with Labor Leaders, the White House Press said Obama was hunting for a $4 trillion Deficit-Cutting Deal, of which $1.6 trillion would be Increased Tax Revenue.

Liberal groups, including the National AFL-CIO, have warned they will oppose attempts to curtail popular Entitlement Programs like Medicare or Social Security on the table.

Labor Leaders said they plan to mobilize their Members in the coming weeks to press Republicans to support the extension of Tax Cuts for Middle-Income Families.

SEIU (Service Employees International Union) President Mary Kay Henry was quoted by the National Media as saying that Labor needs to remain “as engaged as we were in the Election throughout the rest of this year to make sure we get the Republican House to say ‘yes’ to Tax Cuts for the Middle Class.”

One participant in the meeting, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to discuss the private session, said the President told the group that he was not going to bend on letting Tax Cuts expire for Top Wage Earners, and that the Tax Issue was clear during the Election and that he had extended the Bush-Era Tax Cuts once and would not do so again, the participant said.

According to participants, White House Aides said the President intends to hold Campaign-Style Events across the Country after Thanksgiving to drum up support for his proposed solution to the Fiscal Cliff.  It would build upon more than 100 rallies organized by Labor Unions last week urging Members of Congress to avoid Cuts to Entitlement Programs.

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