Yes, President Obama is doing a very poor job negotiating. He was re-elected to fight for the common man, not those making over $250,000. Raising this amount to $400,000, and reducing cost-of-living increases for people on Social Security is a gigantic cave-in to Republicans.
I hope the other Democrats vote against this proposal.
I don't think he really has to do anything at this point. The Republicans, still reeling from the election, are not in a position to negotiate. If taxes go up on the wealthy Obama wins. I assume there isn't a reasonable person on this site that believes revenues aren't going to go up. If we pass the deadline... Democrats win. If they meet the deadline... Democrats win. If Republicans got their way and didn't allow these taxes to be increased they would be suffering a public opinion nightmare which would last well beyond the midterms.
President Obama has a very strong "my way or the highway" policy on some issues and the fiscal cliff is no exception. Compromise should be at the forefront of the political world. I live below the U.S. poverty line, but understand completely why Republicans are against increasing taxes on the wealthy. People should not be penalized for having success in business or a career.
He is trying to take a hard stance on the fiscal cliff. One day he was out campaigning instead of being at the white house negotiating with the house. Both sides will need to make some concessions and so far Obama is not willing to make any to the republicans and the house.
Obama is doing the best job any one person can be expected to do when trying to wrangle 535 people who are equally divided between two diametrically opposed factions into all agreeing on a common solution to a problem. The fiscal cliff is an illustration of the larger problem with our two party system where anything the other party proposes is immediately disregarded as "radical left" or "radical right" policy. Until the congress decides to grow up and share the sand box our country is doomed to never create any political or social change.
Obama is doing the best job that anyone could do given the circumstances. It is important to understand that the President is only one branch of the government and these decisions are largely made by the legislative branch. President Obama can only do so much to navigate the crisis and we should not expect him to work miracles.