The Washington Post

Details from cliff meeting

Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Tex.) emerged briefly from the House Democratic caucus meeting and said Vice President Biden is providing a lengthy "point-by-point presentation" on the fiscal cliff plan that was passed by the Senate Tuesday morning.

Lee said Biden reminded his colleagues that by striking the deal, Democrats had successfully convinced Republicans to back a tax hike for upper-income Americans. Asked whether Democrats worried about raising tax rates for the first time in more than two decades, Lee said she wasn't concerned.

"I think we all came to that ultimate conclusion by way of the president's position in the November 6 election, that it wasn't an increase from the perspective of a negative, but because we made a commitment to raise revenue and protect the middle class."

But Lee said she's still not a guaranteed "yes" vote for the agreement until she's assured that other concessions weren't made to Republicans ahead of forthcoming negotiations over raising the federal debt ceiling.

"I want to make sure that we don't face in two months a hostage-taking on the debt ceiling. I voted for the debt ceiling, but a number of my colleagues did not. A hostage-taking on the debt ceiling, on the chained CPI and on spending cuts."

The Houston area lawmaker said she is most concerned about potential cuts in federal homelessness and housing aid programs that provide assistance to many of her constituents.

Ed O’Keefe is covering the 2016 presidential campaign, with a focus on Jeb Bush and other Republican candidates. He's covered presidential and congressional politics since 2008. Off the trail, he's covered Capitol Hill, federal agencies and the federal workforce, and spent a brief time covering the war in Iraq.

The Freddie Gray case

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!

Campaign 2016 Email Updates

Please provide a valid email address.

You’re all set!
Show Comments
The Republicans debated Saturday night. The New Hampshire primary is Feb. 9. Get caught up on the race.
Highlights from Saturday's GOP debate
Except for an eminent domain attack from Bush, Trump largely avoided strikes from other candidates.

Christie went after Rubio for never having been a chief executive and for relying on talking points.

Carson tried to answer a question on Obamacare by lamenting that he hadn't been asked an earlier question about North Korea.
The GOP debate in 3 minutes
Play Video
We have all donors in the audience. And the reason they're booing me? I don't want their money!
Donald Trump, after the debate crowd at St. Anselm's College booed him for telling Jeb Bush to be "quiet."
Play Video
New Hampshire polling averages
Donald Trump holds a commanding lead in the next state to vote, but Marco Rubio has recently seen a jump in his support, according to polls.
New Hampshire polling averages
A victory in New Hampshire revitalized Hillary Clinton's demoralized campaign in 2008. But this time, she's trailing Bernie Sanders, from neighboring Vermont. She's planning to head Sunday to Flint, Mich., where a cost-saving decision led to poisonous levels of lead in the water of the poor, heavily black, rust-belt city. 
55% 38%
Upcoming debates
Feb. 11: Democratic debate

on PBS, in Wisconsin

Feb 13: GOP debate

on CBS News, in South Carolina

Feb. 25: GOP debate

on CNN, in Houston, Texas

Campaign 2016
State of the race

To keep reading, please enter your email address.

You’ll also receive from The Washington Post:
  • A free 6-week digital subscription
  • Our daily newsletter in your inbox

Please enter a valid email address

I have read and agree to the Terms of Service and Privacy Policy.

Please indicate agreement.

Thank you.

Check your inbox. We’ve sent an email explaining how to set up an account and activate your free digital subscription.