Fiscal Cliff Rhetoric Heats Up As Date Approaches, Sen. Bob Corker Calls Out Both Sides

As fiscal cliff negotiations near the end-point for tax increases on Americans, the rhetoric from both sides of the issue is heating up.

President Obama planned to meet with Congressional leaders from both parties on Friday in what is being called a last-ditch effort to avert the fiscal cliff. If no deal is reached, on January 1 a set of automatic tax hikes and spending cuts will take effect.

The meeting brings what CBS News Chief White House correspondent Major Garrett calls a “glimmer of hope,” but, if the heated dialogue from Republicans and Democrats is any indication, compromise may be difficult.

On Friday, Tennessee Senator Bob Corker told CBS This Morning that the situation looks bleak to outsiders, saying that both President Obama and Congressional leaders have shown a “total dereliction of duty at every level” and a “lack of courage to deal with the spending issues.”

“I’m very surprised that the President has not laid out a very specific plan to deal with this,” said Corker, adding, “Candidly, Congress could have done the same. And I think the American people should be disgusted.”

Corker noted that 98 percent of Americans are set to see higher taxes of some kind.

His words echoed angry sentiments from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, who earlier this week called out House Speaker John Boehner. Reid said that the coming fiscal cliff seems inevitable due to the inaction of the Republican-led Congress, The Huffington Post noted.

“The American people I don’t think understand the House of Representatives is operating without the House of Representatives,” Reid said of the fiscal cliff negotiations. “It’s being operated by a dictatorship of the speaker, not allowing the vast majority of the House of Representatives to get what they want.”