Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, center, arrives at his office in Washington on Sunday.
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The top Senate negotiators on the effort to prevent the government from going over the "fiscal cliff" offered a pessimistic assessment Sunday, barely 24 hours before a deadline to avert tax hikes on virtually every American worker. But the negotiations still continued, with Vice President Joe Biden taking on an expanded role.
With the two sides differing on the income threshold for higher tax rates and how to deal with inheritance taxes, among other issues, talks between Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., and Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell appeared to have broken down.