WASHINGTON (CBS) - America is now one day closer to falling off the so-called fiscal cliff. And yet, the major players are still not sitting down to talk. But there was some good news Wednesday, President Obama and House Speaker John Boehner talked on the phone.
Social security workers marched outside their office in Baltimore Wednesday. They're protesting the government spending cuts due to kick in at the end of the year as part of the fiscal cliff. Retired federal employee Rita Pyle says, "We don't want to see our public hurt in any way."
Just down the road in Washington D.C., the standoff continues. House Speaker John Boehner says he's still waiting for President Obama to make his next counter-offer to the Republican plan he rejected. He says, "We need a response from the White House. We can't sit here and negotiate with ourselves."
The president and Speaker Boehner talked on the phone Wedensday but Republicans want more. House Majority Leader Rep. Eric Cantor says, "We want to sit down with the president. We want to talk specifics."
Whether the talks happen on the phone or in person here on Capitol Hill, there will be no deal without a compromise on taxes, something that doesn't appear likely to happen anytime soon. Cantor says, "We have got to do something about the spending. An obsession to raise taxes is not going to solve the problem."
Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner said the White House is "absolutely" willing to go over the fiscal cliff if the GOP doesn't agree to raise taxes on the top two percent of earners.
While a handful of Republicans appear willing to concede that point, the party's position seems unchangeable. President Obama says, "Speaker Boehner took a position, I think the day after the campaign that said, we're willing to bring in revenue, but we're not willing to increase rates."
The president says if Republicans will concede the point, they could reach a deal within a week.
The White House Budget Office issued an order Wednesday to federal agencies to prepare for more than $100 billion in spending cuts if the government falls off the fiscal cliff.