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Tuesday
Jul052011

Senate’s In Session, But Debt Ceiling Talks Still Stalled

JupiterImages/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- As senators head back to Washington, D.C., Tuesday after their July 4 recess this week was canceled due to the remaining debt ceiling impasse, both sides remain entrenched in their positions, and the road to compromise remains unclear.

There are just 27 days until the nation goes into default, on the Aug. 2 deadline set by the Treasury Department for action to raise the nation’s $14.3 trillion debt ceiling.  The White House said last week that they’d like to see a deal reached by July 22 in order to be able to raise the limit before defaulting on August 2.

That idea has had some support in the Senate.

“The White House I think is being very wise and careful,” Sen. Chuck Schumer, D-N.Y., said last week on conference call with reporters, “They say we should not step to the edge of the cliff because we might fall off. So I think having a date in advance of August 2 to have an agreement in place makes sense.”

But so far that advanced date has done little to speed up the pace of action on Capitol Hill and with the White House, with both sides blaming the other for the stalemate.

The main obstacles facing the negotiations is a stalemate over taxes.  Republicans have been preaching that any deal must not include any added revenues. Democrats Tuesday called the Republicans' position on revenues “stubborn” and “rigid,” and called again for revenues to be considered as part of a package together with spending cuts.

After turning down Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell’s, R-Ky., invitation last Thursday for the president to meet directly with Senate Republicans, another invitation -- this one from Senate Democrats -- is still outstanding.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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