Nov 30, 2012 No Comments ›› Infidel
Excerpted from The Hill: House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) on Friday announced Democrats would circulate a discharge petition to force a House vote to extend current tax rates only on annual household income below $250,000.
The Senate has already approved the extension, but Republicans are objecting because they want all of the Bush-era rates to be extended, including on income above $250,000.
The move by Pelosi comes as President Obama has sought to increase public pressure on Republicans to bend on the issue.
Obama and Congress are struggling to reach a deal on taxes and spending that would prevent the tax hikes as well as $1.2 trillion in automatic spending cuts set to begin in January. Economists warn the combination of increased taxes and spending cuts could throw the economy into a recession.
Republicans argue too much focus is on tax rates and not enough attention is being paid to cutting spending and reforming entitlements that they say are the main drivers of the deficit. Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) and other Republican leaders criticized a White House proposal this week that included $1.6 trillion in new taxes and $400 billion in spending cuts.
Pelosi’s discharge-petition gambit seems unlikely to succeed, even though a few House Republicans — most notably Rep. Tom Cole (R-Okla.) — have offered support for extending the middle-class rates alone.
Democrats would need the support of more than 20 Republicans to secure the 218 signatures needed to force the bill to the floor.