John Boehner, Mitch McConnell, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid are coming over to the White House this afternoon to help Barack Obama take down his Christmas lights and help regrout some bathtubs.
There are also rumors that they must might mention those two dirty words: fiscal cliff.
Obama, while serving his guests leftover Christmas ham, cookies and egg nog, may propose a scaled-down offer to help resolve the standoff.
The president reportedly may offer to extend the Bush-era tax rates for incomes under $400,000, as he had done previously before negotiations blew up in Santa and Scrooge’s faces.
For those of you scoring at home, and we hope you are, Obama originally had set that threshold at $250,000. But in this age of Twitter, nobody sets things in stone anymore. Republicans may push back and ask for $500,000 to help their rich friends avoid bankruptcy and paupers’ prison.
Furthermore, Republicans would be granted an extension of the current estate tax, which is a 35 percent rate over a $5 million threshold. The president wants a 45 percent rate on a $3.5 million threshold but would likely be willing to bend because even Democrats think his proposal is Looney Tunes.
The deal would include an extension of unemployment benefits and various tax breaks for businesses and lower-income workers, making all of them smile like jack-o-lanterns.
In a concession to Republicans, it would not include the infrastructure funding that the president has requested to help stimulate economic growth, which means the Penn Street Bridge will be falling down any day now.
It would also allow the current payroll tax cut to expire, meaning that individuals would see larger withholdings in their paychecks, which has yours truly more enraged than a digestive tract exiting a Taco Bell.
Finally, such a scaled-down offer likely would merely serve as a placeholder while lawmakers assemble a larger bill to take its place.
And then they can do other fun chores around the White House.