And then there were none: Arizona Senator Jon Kyl is joining Eric Cantor in his decision to skip Joe Biden's deficit-reduction talks, which means no Republicans are left on the panel, reports ABC News. The departures come as Mitch McConnell blasted President Obama on the Senate floor, notes Politico, which sees a "concerted effort" by the GOP to force the president to get personally involved in the talks. They've hit an impasse over Democrats' push for tax increases.
"I would expect to hear from (Obama)," said Speaker John Boehner. "I think those talks could continue if they're willing to take the tax hikes off the table." One anonymous Democratic senator views Cantor's move this way: “He’s throwing the hot potato to Boehner because it was too hot for him." Biden canceled today's scheduled meeting after Cantor's announcement, reports the Hill. The remaining Democrats: Max Baucus, Daniel Inouye, James Clyburn, and Chris Van Hollen.