(Photo: JEWEL SAMAD/AFP/Getty Images)
FALLS CHURCH, Va. (AP) - President Barack Obama says the approaching "fiscal cliff" is going to add to holiday stress for American families as the end of the year approaches.
Visiting a basement apartment of a family in suburban Virginia, Obama said Americans "are counting on this getting solved." He said he's "optimistic" that there will be an agreement that is good for families and good for the American economy.
He and Congress have until the end of the year to find a way to avert across-the-board spending cuts and tax increases.
Obama is warning that he's willing to let that double whammy take effect if Republicans don't drop their opposition to higher tax rates for the wealthy. He again vowed not to sign any package that doesn't include an increase in the tax rate for the top 2 percent of American earners.
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