With the August 2nd deadline just days away, Democrats and Republicans are now turning to "rival" back-up plans to raise the nation's debt ceiling. After a weekend of meetings resulting in yet another impasse, President Obama is cancelling two fundraisers today to continue negotiations. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid says the talks broke down last night because of the Republicans' insistence on a short-term deal. But Reid says the Democrats' new proposal is an effort to reach a compromise. Their plan would reportedly cut $2.7 trillion over the next 10 years. Officials say it raises the debt ceiling, but there would be no tax increases. Reid says he hopes John Boehner will abandon his "my way of the highway approach" and help with bipartisan compromise.
Boehner says his proposal is a two-step plan that will reportedly raise the debt ceiling now and cut $1.2 trillion. Then, a bi-partisan committee would be created to find an additional $1.8 trillion in cuts. Meanwhile, White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley is still blaming Speaker Boehner for the impasse. On NBC's "Meet the Press", Daley said the debt ceiling negotiations have already caused "enormous damage" to the United States. He said, "[the debt ceiling] must be extended in a way that gives certainty to the economy through 2013 and not some short term gimmick." And with negotiations still in deadlock, Democratic Senator Mark Warner, a member of the so-called "gang of six", suggests their plan may be the best option available. He said, " We're still the only bipartisan effort in this town... Let's have a vote on our plan."