December 2012 Current Events: U.S. News
Here are the key events in United States news for the month of December 2012.
Republicans Counter Obama's Deficit Reduction Proposal (Dec. 3): Republicans respond to President Obama's deficit reduction proposal with a plan of their own. Their proposal is for a $2.2 trillion deficit decrease over the next ten years by cutting $1.2 trillion in spending and raising $800 billion in revenue. The revenue will come by limiting deductions. Republicans also propose saving another $200 billion by changing the way inflation is calculated. This will slow down benefit increases for social programs like Medicare. (Dec. 4): President Obama rejects the Republicans' proposal to avoid the rapidly approaching fiscal cliff. He tells them he will not agree to any proposal that does not include increases on tax rates for the wealthy. (Dec. 9): President Obama meets privately with House Speaker John Boehner in an attempt to hammer out a deal and avert a fiscal crisis. Meanwhile, Republican Senator Bob Corker, of Tennessee, says in a TV interview that a growing number of Republicans are open to compromising on tax rates.(Dec. 30) With the deadline quickly approaching, Republicans in the Senate back off on their demand that the deal has to include new inflation calculations for Social Security and other programs. Republican Senate leader Mitch McConnell works with Vice President Joe Biden into the late hours of the night finalizing a deal.
U.S. Supreme Court Will Hear Two Same-Sex Marriage Cases (Dec. 7): The U.S. Supreme Court agrees to hear two cases that challenge federal and state laws over the issue that marriage is defined only as a union between a man and a woman. One case, from New York, tackles the federal law that requires the U.S. government to deny all benefits to lesbian and gay couples who are married in states that allow same-sex unions. The second case is from California and the outcome will either reject or reaffirm the constitutional right to same-sex marriage. Decisions on both cases are expected no later than June 2013.
Gunman Kills 26 at Elementary School (Dec. 14): Adam Lanza, age 20, forces his way into Sandy Hook Elementary School, in Newtown, Connecticut, and kills 26 people. The victims include 20 children between the ages of six and seven. Then Lanza takes his own life while still inside the school. Before going to the school, Lanza shoots and kills his mother, Nancy Lanza, in the home they shared. (Dec. 16): President Obama travels to Newtown. In a speech at the memorial service he says, "No single law, no set of laws can eliminate evil from the world or prevent every senseless act of violence in our society, but that can't be an excuse for inaction."