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There was good news Friday, following a pow-wow between President Obama and leaders of the House and the Senate: All four of the legislators predicted that a budget agreement will be reached by year end, averting a plunge off the ''fiscal cliff." A week ago, we seemed to be tottering on the brink. A quickie law will be passed delaying the detonation of the Budget Control Act of 2011, which calls for steep spending cuts, beginning in January. This, plus a delay in automatic tax increases, would keep us from going over the cliff. Look for a detailed list of goals for revenue gains and spending cuts to be announced before Christmas -- with the actual butcher's bill passed early next year by the new Congress.
House Speaker John Boehner Friday said he would agree to higher revenue in return for significant spending cuts. The Senate minority leader, Republican Mitch McConnell, said the cuts must include entitlement reform that fits a changing America. Surprisingly, neither the House minority leader, Democrat Nancy Pelosi nor the Senate majority leader, Democrat Harry Reid, objected.