Budget negotiations between congressional leaders seem to be off to a strong start: The sides have identified at least $1 trillion in possible spending cuts, mediator Joe Biden told reporters yesterday. “If we keep on this pace, we can get to a relatively large number,” he said, adding that “big ticket” items like Medicare and Medicaid would be on the chopping block, the LA Times reports.
There are still some major points of contention: Republicans say they’ll insist on $2 trillion, while Democrats insist that new revenue, preferably gained by closing tax loopholes, will have to be part of the deal. But Republicans agreed that the talks were going well. “I am confident that we can get to over $1 trillion in immediate cuts,” Eric Cantor said. “And I reiterated that tax increases cannot pass the House.” (Read more Joe Biden stories.)