1. FISCAL CLIFF

    Obama: Tax Increases a Must

    Alex Wong / Getty Images

    Cue the conservative handwringing. President Obama reiterated Tuesday that any deal made to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff must include tax increases on the wealthiest Americans. "What I'm going to need...is an acknowledgment that folks like me can pay a little bit higher rate," the president said, adding that he’s also willing to entertain entitlement reforms. The White House and House Republicans have presented competing plans to bring down the debt, arguing the government must close loopholes to raise revenue, but not raise taxes on the country’s top earners.

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