Fiscal Cliff Countdown Begins: OBAMA: ‘I Was Modestly Optimistic Yesterday, But We Don’t See An Agreement’ (VIDEO)… Reid Says Democrats Have No Counter Offer, McConnell Calls On Biden For Help… DEVELOPING….

NBC’s David Gregory has an exclusive interview with President Barack Obama, which will air today at 10:30 AM ET.

Gregory has been tweeting quotes.  Here’s what he’s given us so far:

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“I was modestly optimistic yesterday, but we don’t see an agreement,” Obama told MTP host David Gregory in the interview, which was taped at the White House Saturday. “We have been talking to the Republicans ever since the election was over. They have had trouble saying ‘yes’ to a number of repeated offers.”

Watch the clip below:

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Reid Says Democrats Have No Counter Offer, McConnell Calls On Biden For Help

With just over 24 hours to go until the fiscal cliff deadline, Senate negotiators are still scrambling to come up with a last-minute deal to prevent the huge tax hikes and budget cuts scheduled to go into effect on January 1.

Lawmakers have spent the weekend trying to come up with a deal that can pass both the Senate and the House, but negotiators are reportedly still deadlocked over key provisions, including the estate tax, the extension of unemployment benefits, and cuts in Medicare payments to doctors.

The main issue, however, continues to be disagreement over what the threshold should be for letting the Bush tax rates expire. Democrats are still insisting that tax rates go up for those households earning more than $250,000 a year. Republicans want the threshold to be higher, perhaps around $400,000.

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