The Tea Party will obstruct Obama's agenda. The 'Fiscal Cliff' and immigration reform will be top priorities for Pres. Obama. There is incentive for the GOP to resolve the Fiscal Cliff, however, getting any tax increases on the wealthy to pass the Tea Party and other Grover Norquist puppets, will be the challenge. Immigration reform may prove to be far easier, as the GOP must tap into the Latino vote to win in 2016.
U.S. House Speaker Boehner, has offered the potential of a bargain which raises revenues while excluding tax rate increases. This is a non-starter for Pres. Obama, who campaigned on the wealthiest paying more to help America's economy and deficit reduction. This fact would appear to create an impasse, leaving America to fall off the Fiscal Cliff into recession.
Which brings us back to the blame game, should we go over the Fiscal Cliff. Therefore, the only logical approach for the White House is to immediately craft an effort which undeniably leaves the Republicans holding the bag for the Fiscal Cliff and making that effort public from coast to coast. The advantage Pres. Obama has, is that the public did provide two mandates with the election. The first mandate was to get something done for the benefit of the American people. And the second mandate was the Pres. Obama is to lead on this effort.
Hence, we are likely to see Pres. Obama offer a plan to the public and Republicans very soon, which would avoid the Fiscal Cliff, if the Republicans go along. And if they don't, despite all spin and rhetoric, the public will hold the Republicans responsible for layoffs, and a drop in economic activity, affecting millions of Americans.
The plan, if the public is to hold Republicans responsible, must appear reasonable and timely. Timely is easy; this month. Reasonable will require that Obama's offer fulfills his promise to raise revenues from the wealthiest, while giving Republicans something substantial in the way of spending cuts that exceed the revenues Obama proposes raising. This offer must be readily understandable by the public.
The ball is in Pres. Obama's court. However, if he succeeds in producing a viable, understandable, and timely offer for Congress' consideration, the ball will be served to the Republican's court, where moderate and Tea Party Republicans will have to fight over the future prospects of their party.