McConnell begs Democrats to negotiate: ‘I need a dance partner’

WASHINGTON – An exasperated Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell took to the floor of the U.S. Senate on Sunday afternoon to lament how Democrats haven’t responded yet to a proposal he offered them on averting the so-called fiscal cliff.

“I want everyone to know I’m willing to get this done,” McConnell said. “But I need a dance partner.”

The Kentucky Republican didn’t specify any details about the new offer to stop the automatic spending cuts and tax increases about to go into effect at the end of the year.

But McConnell said his office submitted a proposal to Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid’s office on Saturday night at 7 p.m. “We’ve yet to receive a response to our good faith offer,” he said.

“Now I’m concerned about the lack of urgency here,” McConnell said. “I think we all know we’re running out of time. There is far too much at stake for political gamesmanship.”

Immediately following McConnell’s speech from the floor, Reid said they have been in negotiations for hours with Republicans, but aren’t yet able to respond.

“We’ve been trying to come up with some counter offer to my friend’s proposal,” Reid said. “We have been unable to do that.”

Added the Nevada Democrat: “I’ve had a number of conversations with the president and at this stage, we’re not able to make a counter offer.”

During his remarks, McConnell said he has asked Vice President Joe Biden to help “jumpstart the negotiations on his side.”

“The vice president and I have worked together on solutions before, and I believe we can again,” McConnell said.

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