Senate eyeing two-month delay of automatic spending cuts -McCain

WASHINGTON Mon Dec 31, 2012 6:14pm EST

WASHINGTON Dec 31 (Reuters) - A possible deal between Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell and Vice President Joe Biden to avert the "fiscal cliff" would include a two-month delay in automatic federal spending cuts that were due to begin this week, Republican Senator John McCain said on Monday.

McCain said the deal would include $24 billion in other spending cuts to cover the cost of the delay, and would also include a one-year extension of unemployment benefits.

It is unclear if such a deal would go up for a vote in the Democratic-controlled Senate before midnight (0500 GMT on Tuesday), the deadline to avoid the "fiscal cliff" of tax hikes and spending cuts. It also faces an uncertain future in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives.

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