President Obama “announced Tuesday that he would pull together four members of Congress with his Treasury Secretary and Budget Director to work out a compromise on the expiring Bush-era tax cuts, an agreement that has so far alluded members, primarily with Democrats in disarray about how to move forward,” Fox News reports.
Sen. Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., tapped his top lieutenant, Sen. Jon Kyl, R-Ariz., the GOP Whip, for the Senate Republican slot.
Completing the Senate side of the negotiating table, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont.
Kyl said, "Hopefully today," when asked how soon negotiations with Secretary Tim Geithner and Director Jack Lew on a tax cut compromise could begin.
Republicans have maintained that all the tax cuts should be extended, preferably permanently, but they have also been clear that they would accept a short term extension, as well.
McConnell’s choice is “particularly interesting, in that it would seem to bypass the most obvious choices, his current top Republican on the tax-writing panel, Chuck Grassley of Iowa, and his incoming chairman of that panel, Orrin Hatch, R-Utah.”