Obama holds #My2k Twitter town hall on extending the middle-class tax cuts for 2013

President Barack Obama took to Twitter this afternoon to discuss the White House’s plans on averting the so-called “fiscal cliff” that is expected to take place on January 1.

“Good to see lots of folks on twitter speaking out on extending middle class tax cuts. I’ll answer some Qs on that at 2ET. Ask w/#My2k – bo,” the President tweeted through the White House’s official Twitter account at 12:30pm today.

The President received questions on various different subjects, including entitlement reform, increasing taxes on the wealthiest two percent of Americans, and tax deductions for homeowners.

“We can reduce deficit in balanced way by ending tax cuts for top 2% + reforms that strengthen safety net & invest in future,” the President tweeted in response to @pmmckenzie’s question about the impact that the fiscal cliff negotiations regarding entitlement reform will have on lower-class Americans.

Participant @davidosteen asked the President why he prefers increasing taxes for the wealthy to reducing our current government spending. “[already] cut $1T+ in gov spending last yr. Discretionary spending lowest as % of GDP since ike…Open to more smart cuts but not in areas like R&D, edu that help growth & jobs, or hurt vulnerable (eg disabled).”

Not every question received a serious answer from the Commander-in-Chief, however. When asked by @dontbeaprat – who still had an “I voted” Obama ribbon on her profile picture – if keeping the cuts would help her as a recent college graduate without a full-time job, the President included a tongue-in-cheek comment about her purple hair in his response.

President Obama also saved his last question for something near and dear to his heart – Chicago sports. In response to @Mica4Life’s question about which Chicago team “will win it all first,” Obama commented, “[da bears] still gotta shot, despite sad loss this weekend! Plus rose will return for playoffs!!!”

Washington Republicans didn’t let the President have all of the Twitter glory, however. House Majority Leader Eric Cantor sponsored a promoted tweet throughout the entirety of the Twitter town hall. “Mr. President, time to get serious. Let’s protect small businesses and families from a harmful increase in tax rates and cut spending #my2K,” Cantor’s tweet read. Freedomworks, which helped elect Tea Party candidates to Washington over the last two federal elections, not only asked its own questions to the President, but retweeted those of its followers to increase their presence in the queue. This tweet coincided with the House Leadership’s announcement of a counterproposal, which calls for $2.2 trillion in cuts through a combination of spending cuts, entitlement reforms and $800 billion in new tax revenue.

This is not the President’s first twitter town hall – he also held one in July 2011 to answer questions about the economy and unemployment. Today’s town hall is just one element of a larger social media campaign the White House plans to use to promote his plan over the next few weeks.

Comments

Polititainment

'The Interview' to drop in North Korea

Human rights groups are set to drop DVDs of "The Interview" into North Korea via hydrogen balloons, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Democrats fundraising off of Colbert

First came the birthday cards, then came the desperate pleas for help, now comes "The Colbert Report."

Sony hack just got a lot scarier

The group allegedly behind the cyberattacks -- which identifies itself as "Guardians of Peace" -- suggested that it will organize terror attacks at movie theaters when the film "The Interview" premiers.

Obamas talk racism with People magazine

People magazine conducted an interview with Barack and Michelle Obama during which the first couple discussed their experience with racism in America.

Stewart on 'Don't Jerk and Drive'

Jon Stewart barely held it together for a segment on South Dakota’s unbelievably terrible “Don’t Jerk and Drive” campaign.

White House

District court declares Obama’s executive action on immigration unconstitutional
A federal court in Pennsylvania declared parts of President Obama’s executive actions on immigration unconstitutional Tuesday. Judge Arthur J. Schwab, sitting in the western district of Pennsylvania, said presidents do have the power to use discretion in deciding how to enforce laws, but found that Obama’s recent executive action went much further than that.  He said Obama was writing […]
Obama administration extends Pell grants to juvenile offenders
The Obama administration has set out new guidelines that allow for students sentenced to juvenile correctional facilities to be eligible for federal Pell grants. The U.S. Department of Education and Department of Justice sent out a joint release Monday that clarified an earlier law. Congress in 1994 prohibited inmates at federal and state prisons from receiving Pell Grants […]
White House denies report that it wants to delay release of CIA torture report

The White House is insisting it wants the Senate Intelligence Committee to release its report on CIA torture practices, despite a report that Secretary of State John Kerry is trying to scuttle it.

Kate visits NYC kids; Prince William joins Obama

NEW YORK (AP) — Prince William's wife, Kate, wrapped Christmas gifts, helped preschoolers decorate picture frames and left an impression of a down-to-earth royal as she toured a child development center Monday with New York City's first lady.

The surprising opponents and backers of Obama’s net neutrality plan

Ted Cruz vs. Justice Scalia, and Obama vs. Jesse Jackson and the NAACP: The fight in Washington over "net neutrality” and has drawn up some strange battle lines.

Congress

Retiring DemHenry Waxman's farewell ode to govt

You'd think that, 40 years in, a congressman might grow cynical about the prospects of government meddling. Not retiring Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.)!

Senate Confirms Pro-Gun Control Surgeon General
NATIONAL JOURNAL — The Senate narrowly confirmed a new surgeon general whose nomination was delayed for months in a fight over his comments alleging that guns are a public health issue. The confirmation represents a victory for gun-control advocates, even as recent polling has shown Americans moving in the other direction toward gun-rights protections. The […]
Congress gave DOD $3 billion in extra funds

Christmas came early for the Pentagon (and Lockheed Martin.)

Rand Paul's bill to repeal Obama's exec order

Sen. Rand Paul (R-Ky.) has filed a bill to overturn President Obama’s executive action on immigration.

Congress sends Obama $1.1 T spending bill

Congress cleared a $1.1 trillion spending bill for President Barack Obama's signature late Saturday night after a day of Senate intrigue capped by a failed, largely symbolic Republican challenge to the administration's new immigration policy.