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Obama: Ready to Do ‘Tough Things’ for Fiscal Deal

President Obama and House Speaker Boehner

By JIM KUHNHENN, Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Barack Obama says he is prepared to do “tough things” for a “fiscal cliff” deal and says there is no reason for the talks to fail.

The president said he remains optimistic that a deal can be done, even though talks have reached a standstill.

Negotiations between the White House and Boehner’s office on a deal to raise revenue and cut spending have stalled since House Speaker John Boehner decided to seek a vote in the House on a narrow bill that would raise taxes on taxpayers earning more than $1 million.

Obama has proposed raising the top tax rate for those earning more than $400,000 along with savings and spending cuts of $1.2 trillion.