(WASHINGTON) — With the dirty dishes cleared and leftovers safely in the fridge, Americans across the country start looking ahead to the winter holidays the day after Thanksgiving.
But for Congress, there’s a pretty big hurdle to handle before the House and Senate can abscond to presents and plum pudding. It’s called the fiscal cliff, and according to a recent Pew Research Poll, more Americans are paying attention to it than the scandal surrounding Gen. David Petraeus’ resignation.
While talks and deals on budget cuts and tax increases are currently on hold, once the holiday weekend ends, it’s time to take to Twitter and follow these folks to learn what’s at stake, where each party stands and whether to expect a bipartisan deal for the new year.
Follow Tweeters in the House
These partisan tweeters should give a good idea of where things stand on the House side of Capitol Hill.
@SpeakerBoehner – The official Twitter account for the speaker of the House commends Republican representatives for their work on the fiscal cliff negotiations and retweets relevant articles with a GOP slant. Last Friday, a tweet from the account said, “Survey shows Americans favor GOP approach to averting #fiscalcliffhttp://j.mp/SsmYJT ” To see more of Boehner’s opinions on the issue and read about his meetings with key players, follow his personal account: @JohnBoehner.
@NancyPelosi – While the House minority leader has kept her thoughts on the fiscal cliff away from Twitter for now, Pelosi expressed strong sentiments on the need for higher taxation of wealthy Americans in her interview with ABC’s Martha Raddatz Sunday. Pelosi will be a tweeter to watch as options come on and off the table – she’s a good gauge for how the rest of the party will vote.
@RepPaulRyan – The budget hawk has stayed out of the spotlight since losing the vice presidency earlier this month, but as chairman of the House Budget Committee, it’s unlikely Ryan will resist for long when spending cuts are in sight. The former VP nominee’s other Twitter account,@PaulRyanVP, spent a lot of time tweeting about the need for pro-growth policies and the reduction of government debt. Keep an eye on Ryan’s congressional account to see if those positions will factor into the negotiations this time around.
@ChrisVanHollen – As a ranking member on the House Budget Committee, Rep. Van Hollen, D-Md., has tweeted a photo of him discussing the fiscal cliff, a video of his interview on it and vitriolic attacks with the hashtag #DoNothingGOP.
Tweeters in the Senate
Ranking senators on the fiscal cliff aren’t as inclined to tweet as their House counterparts, but here is a couple to keep in your newsfeed.
@ChuckGrassley – The Republican senator from Iowa doesn’t tweet many links or videos, but he is outspoken in his digital opinions. “PresObama meets w Congressional leaders tomorrow. I hope it is a serious attempt by PresO to reach bipartisan agreement not a photo op 4tax,” Grassley tweeted Nov. 15. In addition to 140-character diatribes on the fiscal cliff, use Grassley’s feed to learn about deer hunting, the History Channel and University of Northern Iowa football.
@SenJohnMcCain – The outspoken former presidential candidate will be one to watch throughout these negotiations. In addition to offering news on foreign affairs and the state of the nation’s finances, McCain adds humor,tweeting a little pre-emptively last weekend, “Twinkies maker Hostess closes – what will we do without deep fried Twinkies at the #Iowa State Fair?”
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