Obama hails US budget deal

Barack Obama has hailed a deal to avoid a "fiscal cliff" of stark tax hikes and spending cuts. The US House of Representatives backed the bill by 257 votes to 167.

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Senate leaders 'to agree two-month spending cut delay'

A possible deal between Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell and Vice President Joe Biden to avert the 'fiscal cliff' would include a two-month delay in automatic federal spending cuts due to begin this week, according to Republican Senator John McCain.

McCain said the deal would include $24 billion in other spending cuts to cover the cost of the delay, and would also include a one-year extension of unemployment benefits.

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