Tuesday, December 20, 2011

House Republicans Reject Payroll Tax Cut Extension

The Republicans are the party of tax cuts–if they benefit the one percent. With the House Republicans’ rejection of a payroll tax cut extension, about which they have never been enthusiastic, will middle and lower class Americans still vote for the GOP–and against their interests? Can the Republicans make it any clearer that they work against the 99 percent? This latest move, as President Obama states, also affects unemployment benefits and Medicare:

By turning down a bill that was overwhelmingly supported by both parties in the Senate as well as the White House, the conservative House majority that has spent the year inciting combative legislative showdowns is now staring over the brink, standing fast against legislation with significant financial consequences for nearly every American household.

...Not a single Democrat joined the House Republicans in rejecting the Senate bill on Tuesday — a rare occurrence. An hour after that vote, Mr. Obama swept unannounced into his press secretary’s daily briefing with White House reporters. He called the Senate measure — which would maintain a two-month extension of a payroll tax holiday for 160 million workers, continue unemployment benefits for millions more and maintain Medicare reimbursement fees for doctors — “the only viable way to prevent a tax hike, on Jan. 1. The only one.”

Millions of Americans, and the overall economy, would suffer without such action, he said. “The clock is ticking; time is running out,” Mr. Obama said. “And if the House Republicans refuse to vote for the Senate bill, or even allow it to come up for a vote, taxes will go up in 11 days.”

Image: Chan Lowe, Sun Sentinel

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