Local Protesters React to Fiscal Cliff - ABC5 News Des Moines, IA

Local Protesters React to Fiscal Cliff

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By Alex Schuman

aschuman@myabc5.com

@alexschuman

Members of Progress Iowa protested outside Sen. Chuck Grassley's Des Moines office Sunday afternoon. 

They stood on the curb waving signs and wearing Happy New Years hats hoping people might listen to their message. 

"Much like the ball drops on Time Square every year on New Years Eve, we hope that [Congress] doesn't let the ball drop on the middle class this year," said Matt Sinovic, Progress Iowa executive director.

They want Grassley and the rest of Iowa's congressional delegation to vote for keeping taxes low on anyone making less than $250,000 dollars while letting taxes increase for higher incomes.

"I think if there's a deficit, they shouldn't correct that deficit on the backs of the people who make the least," said Midge Slater, a Des Moines resident.

Even though Progress Iowa is a liberal leaning organization, several protesters do not agree with President Obama's approach to negotiations. 

They are unhappy Obama is willing to exchange changes to social security in order to get Republicans to agree to any kind of tax hike.

"There are a lot of people for whom social security is keeping them out of poverty," said Slater.

These protesters do not expect the deal to be perfect, but in the final hours of negotiation, some are just hoping there's a deal.

"If nothing happens tomorrow," said Sinovic.  "Taxes will go up anywhere from between two and three thousand dollars in the course of the year, which is a lot of money for a family just struggling to make ends meat."

We contacted Sen. Grassley's office about the protest, but are still waiting for a response.

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