Sen. McConnell says still time to avert US 'fiscal cliff'

WASHINGTON Thu Dec 27, 2012 4:08pm EST

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WASHINGTON Dec 27 (Reuters) - The top Republican in the U.S. Senate, Mitch McConnell, on Thursday said that there is still time to avert the "fiscal cliff" and a "wholly preventable economic crisis."

In a speech on the Senate floor McConnell warned, however, that Senate Republicans "aren't about to write a blank check for anything Senate Democrats put forward just because we find ourselves at the edge of the cliff."

Lawmakers and President Barack Obama are up against a Dec. 31 deadline for finding a way to stop $600 billion in potentially harmful tax hikes and spending cuts from taking effect with an alternative deficit-reduction formula.

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