Sen. Joe Lieberman (Conn.), the independent Democrat who has played roles in past Senate compromises, says President Obama needs to get more involved in the fiscal cliff talks.

Lieberman, who brought Republican senators on board with the 2009 economic stimulus package and a 2005 deal on judicial nominees, says it’s time for Obama to gather congressional leaders around a negotiating table.

The retiring senator says his GOP colleagues were left frustrated after meeting with Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner on Thursday and suggested Obama take charge, something Republicans have been calling for since the election.

“My impression also is that the Republicans who were there and our colleagues who heard about it felt it was a step back, the chemistry in the room was bad,” Lieberman said about the meeting between Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (Ky.) and Geithner.

Lieberman said GOP colleagues are dismayed Obama gave them little credit for offering to increase tax revenues by $800 billion. Republicans say Geithner’s counter offer to raise taxes by $1.6 trillion and cut spending by $400 billion and enact $50 billion in new stimulus spending was not a serious proposal.

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