File photo of President-elect Barack Obama when he was campaigning at Hart Plaza in Detroit. Courtesy: Detroit Free Press
WASHINGTON, D.C. (Todd Spangler, Detroit Free Press Washington Staff) - President Barack Obama will travel to metro Detroit on Monday to talk about the economy and middle-class families as he presses congressional Republicans to accept a fiscal deal that would see tax rates go up for higher-income earners.
A White House official said more details of the visit, which has not been publicly announced yet, will be released in the days to come. No information has been disclosed on the time of the event, where it is to be held and whether it will be open to the public.
It comes at an auspicious moment for the recently re-elected Democratic president and his administration. Without some kind of deal with congressional Republicans, the nation faces going over what is being referred to in Washington as a fiscal cliff - an automatic implementation of deep spending cuts to both military and domestic programs and across-the-board tax increases that analysts have said could threaten to plunge the country back into a recession.
Obama and his Democratic colleagues are offering a package of less severe cuts and increased tax revenues that would be based on letting tax cuts enacted in 2001 and 2003 for households that make more than $250,000 annually expire at year's end. Republicans, including House Speaker John Boehner, have rejected the offer, preferring to find a way to limit deductions as a way of raising new revenues. If a deal is not reached, taxes would automatically go up on practically all income levels.
Obama's visit to the area is his first since April, when he attended a pair of fund-raisers in metro Detroit. He did not visit Michigan during the heat of the campaign season and, as it turned out, his presence wasn't mandatory to winning: Obama defeated Republican nominee Mitt Romney - who grew up in Bloomfield Hills - by 9 percentage points in Michigan in last month's election.