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Lawmakers divided on whether a 'fiscal cliff' deal will be reached

Some members of Congress are holding out hope that Friday's meeting between President Obama, Vice President Biden and House and Senate leaders will result in an agreement on tax rates and spending. Others have taken a more pessimistic view, calling the meeting a "photo-op" and saying it only appears like both sides are negotiating.

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Democratic National Committee (DNC) Chairwoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz on Friday argued that, given the time frame, a smaller deal still has a chance of passing.

"As long as the leaders are still talking, there is still time for us to hammer out a deal and prevent us from going over the fiscal cliff," the Florida representative said on MSNBC.

Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) told CBS's "This Morning" that he believes this afternoon's meeting is "optics to make it look like we're doing something."

"Probably the worst-case scenario will come out of this meeting today and that is we will kick the can down the road ... we'll do some small deal and we'll create another fiscal cliff to deal with this fiscal cliff. Again a total lack of courage, lack of leadership," said Corker.

Rep. Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) fought back, saying that the White House meeting is "not for show," but rather a "last-ditch effort" to get at least a small deal agreed upon by the end of the year.

Reps. Tom Cole (R-Okla.) and John Yarmuth (D-Ky.) appeared on MSNBC Thursday, differing on whether Congress could reach an agreement.

"I actually still think there's a chance to get something done and so, you know, these deals usually come together at the last moment. That's what happened on the budget deal, the debt-ceiling deal. I think that's what's going to happen again," said Cole on MSNBC's "Daily Rundown."

Yarmuth responded that unless there were "230 Tom Coles" on the GOP side, a deal would "unfortunately" not be passed in the House. 

However, despite holding disparate views on taxes and spending, as well as pointing fingers at one another, senators appeared to grow more optimistic on Friday ahead of the president's meeting with Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.), Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and House Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (Calif.).

Read more on the rising optimism that a deal will be reached.