Republican leaders are reportedly rejecting the White House's initial offer on the fiscal cliff negotiations presented by Treasury Secretary Tim Geithner on Thursday, but Rep. Peter Welch, D-Vt., insists Democrats have the upper hand.
"The president did run on an explicit plan to raise taxes on the top 2%," Welch said on msnbc's Jansing & Co. "Speaker Boehner has said revenues have to be part of the deal, but he hasn't done anything specific to say what revenues would be acceptable to him."
Welch says complaints coming from the GOP over Medicare cuts and the debt ceiling are diversions Republican House Speaker John Boehner is using to keep the peace within his own caucus.
In anticipation of President Obama's visit to Pennsylvania to pitch his tax plan, Republicans on Friday released a video showing a small business owner from the same The Keystone State. The clip features Jerry Gorski, owner of an engineering company founded in 1954. He has 17 employees.
In the video, Gorski says, "We just went through a horrible climate where our work was off 40%. We went through every bit of money that we set aside for a rainy day but it's been a long rainy day. And now our company has figured out how to survive in this economy and the first thing we want to do with any income I have is tax it? That's uncertainty."
The video ends with a slate saying, "We've got your back" to small business owners.
When asked about the video, Rep. Welch said, "that was the argument Mitt Romney made and you lost." He pointed to exit polls that show 60% of Americans believe taxes should rise for the wealthy.
"They [Republicans] know at the end of the day they're going to have to raise these taxes, but doing so is going to cause an immense amount of political pain," Welch said.
But, while Welch says Democrats have the upper hand, conservative bloggers and pundits today dared Democrats to go off the fiscal cliff. Both Charles Krauthammer and Erick Erickson wrote opinion pieces telling Republicans to walk away from a deal that didn't account for spending cuts.