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The Boston Globe

Politics

Obama and congressional leaders try to avoid fiscal cliff

WASHINGTON — Senate leaders said Friday they would spend the weekend attempting to patch together a last-minute budget deal to avoid the fiscal cliff, after President Obama and some lawmakers said they were optimistic they could engineer an agreement despite a week of doubt and stalled negotiations.

“I’m hopeful and optimistic,’’ said Senator Mitch McConnell, the Republican minority leader, in a marked departure from the partisan jibes and finger-pointing that have marked most of the public dialogue in recent days.

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