September 16th, 2010
12:30 PM ET
4 years ago

Boehner pushes extension of all Bush tax cuts

House Minority Leader John Boehner pushed Thursday for an extension of all of the Bush tax cuts.
House Minority Leader John Boehner pushed Thursday for an extension of all of the Bush tax cuts.

Washington (CNN) – A week after roiling many of his fellow Republicans by suggesting he could vote to extend just middle class tax cuts, House Minority Leader John Boehner is urging Speaker Nancy Pelosi to hold an "up or down vote" on extending all of the Bush era tax cuts - including those for the wealthiest Americans.

"On the issue of job-killing tax hikes the American people are not going to accept anything less than the vote they deserve," Boehner told reporters on Capitol Hill Thursday.

"Anything less than that is unacceptable," he said.

Democratic leaders - including President Barack Obama - want to allow the expiration of the Bush tax cuts for those making over $250,000 a year. They argue, among other things, that the roughly $700 billion price tag of extending the cuts would be fiscally irresponsible.

Republicans contend that a tax hike on any segment of the population would damage prospects for a more robust economic recovery. They also have asserted that a tax hike on those making over $250,000 would hurt small businesses.

Boehner found himself on the defensive with many rank-and-file Republicans after stating Sunday on CBS's "Face the Nation" that he would vote for legislation extending only the tax cuts for those making under $250,000 if no alternatives were available. Since then, he has repeatedly stressed his intention to push for a full extension for at least two years.

Democratic leaders, however, have also run into problems with their rank-and-file members. Thirty-one House Democrats, most of whom face tough re-election bids this fall, have signed a letter to Pelosi and House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer urging them to extend expiring tax breaks for all income levels, including the wealthy.

With the midterm elections now less than two months away, top Democrats have not yet decided whether they will schedule a vote on the legislation before voters go to the polls.

The letter - written by Rep. Jim Matheson of Utah, Rep. Melissa Bean of Illinois, Rep. Glenn Nye of Virginia and Rep. Gary Peters of Michigan - echoes many of the GOP arguments. It states that after listening to economists, small businesses and families over recent weeks, they are concerned that "raising any taxes right now could negatively impact economic growth."

"We believe in times of economic recovery it makes good sense to maintain things as they are in the short term, to provide families and businesses the certainty required to plan and make sound budget decisions. Providing this certainty will give small businesses, the backbone of our economic recovery, confidence and stability," the lawmakers wrote.

Hoyer said earlier this week that he would consider alternative proposals, but stressed he strongly favors allowing the tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans to expire.

– CNN's Deirdre Walsh and Alan Silverleib contributed to this report


Filed under: issues • John Boehner • Taxes
soundoff (60 Responses)
  1. Mesa Mick

    The top 2% had almost 10 years of getting money for nothing because of Bushie-43's "tax gift". Just ask Geo. Steinbrener's family for starters.

    Things have changed since 2001. Now it's time for the top 2% to contribute to ending the Great Recession we're in so that down the road when things are like they were after Clinton left office (balanced budget and a surplus) they can once again get a tax break for helping our country now when we need it the most.

    September 16, 2010 01:31 pm at 1:31 pm |
  2. Chuck Anaheim, Ca

    But mr. orange man did you and your cronies not set that bill to expire for a reason? In reality the dems have NOTHING to do with any tax increase at all, it was your weak legislation that is causing the increase.

    September 16, 2010 01:32 pm at 1:32 pm |
  3. For All

    Only way to grow the economy, yet we have some that this concept is above their mental capability to grasp. All they think of is redistributing the wealth through give away programs.

    September 16, 2010 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  4. King G......

    If tax cuts for the wealthy work so well and it gets business creating jobs,tell me why have jobs been declining since these tax cuts been in place????

    September 16, 2010 01:33 pm at 1:33 pm |
  5. aunt Bea and Opie

    John,have another scotch on the rocks and play a game of toewrestling with Keith in Austin.

    September 16, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  6. a health economist

    A small business owner with an earned income of $500,000 would see an increase to the taxes on dollars 250,001 through 500,000. Ignoring any tax deductions this income ($250,000) would be taxed 3% more. That's $7,500 for an overall tax increase of 1.5%. Please tell me what job making only $7,500 per year would be killed because of the increase in taxes to this small business owner? It sure isn't a full time position because that would be a rate of approximately $3.61 an hour which is less than minimum wage.

    Granted, a business owner making $5,000,000 in earned income would see a tax increase of roughly $142,500 per year. But any business owner making $5 million in EARNED INCOME is not a small business owner. And according to the GOP it is the small business owners that make all the jobs.

    September 16, 2010 01:38 pm at 1:38 pm |
  7. Squiggs

    What will it be tomorrow Bohner? Only tax cuts for overly tanned people.

    September 16, 2010 01:40 pm at 1:40 pm |
  8. Claudia, Houston, Tx

    Boehner and the Republicans work for 2% of the richest Americans and refusing to work for the other 97% is called "dereliction of duty" because they put their hand on the Bible and swore to work for all Americans just like our military men and women.

    September 16, 2010 01:42 pm at 1:42 pm |
  9. Independent Voter

    31 Democrats sellout to get re-elected.

    September 16, 2010 01:43 pm at 1:43 pm |
  10. kp

    It seems to make more sense to increase tax cuts for those making under $100,000 per year and let the tax cuts expire for those making over that. Anyone making over $200,000 could probably afford an increase, those over $500,000 an even bigger increase.

    September 16, 2010 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  11. carlos

    an UP and OUT vote for the boner and back to his janitor job

    September 16, 2010 01:51 pm at 1:51 pm |
  12. Snow

    Yeah, botox pelosi let's have an up or down vote. The party of not only no but hell no wants to help the job creators which must be helped so they can expand and create jobs this country needs.

    September 16, 2010 01:52 pm at 1:52 pm |
  13. lmj

    Boehner forgot to mention "small businesses". I owned a small business for 15 years and never once did I make $250,000. It just kills me to see the Repubs constantly wanting tax cuts for "small businesses" that make more than a quarter million a year. What a joke.

    September 16, 2010 01:53 pm at 1:53 pm |
  14. Shirley in California

    Ask yourself this question: what have the Bush tax cuts done for you?

    They placed a couple of hundred dollars in my hand (not enough to even pay my car note). Yes, REPEAL THEM. They are worthless. If they worked so well – why aren't there more jobs? I'll tell you why. The rich kept all the increase for themselves. So what if Paris Hell bound can't buy a new purse? There is nothing wrong with achievement IF you work for it and become subsequently become rich – good for you but the majority of these self-serving millionaires became rich OFF OF YOU and your sweat. Please Mr. President – help the middle-class.

    September 16, 2010 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  15. charlie from the North

    29% think they should be extended to the wealthy if you subtract the 4% who actually are wealthy that is 25%. 25% of America thinks a lot of stuff: Obama is Muslim, the world is 6000 years old, global warming is fake, George W Bush did a good job, the world is flat, etc.

    Now whatever you think about that 25%, they vote. So if you would like that 25% to be the majority just stay home on election day because that's what will happen if you do stay home.

    After all just one vote doesn't mean much and they are all the same anyway. Yeah tell that to the millions of people whose lives were touched by the Bush Administration.

    September 16, 2010 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  16. anotherGDlefty

    Sounds like Johnny had a trip to the McConnell / Limbaugh woodshed.

    September 16, 2010 01:55 pm at 1:55 pm |
  17. Dennis

    Of course he is pushing for it. He is being pressured from all his BILLIONAIRE buddies who made all their money on the backs of the hard-working middle class Americans. All this BS about how all this tax-cutting for the RICH created job? PROVE IT!!!! Seems to me we lost a lot of jobs under BUSH (8,000,000) overseas. Wake up AMERICA and take your country back before you are reduced to proverty.

    September 16, 2010 01:59 pm at 1:59 pm |
  18. bill

    go back to your tanning bed.boehner you are a fool.and we all know it.you have said no to average workers one time to many. YOU ARE TOAST.

    September 16, 2010 02:00 pm at 2:00 pm |
  19. anagram_kid

    I am all for lower taxes for everyone, but I would want to see some proof that those receiving these tax breaks put that money back into the economy in ways that actually created jobs. If they can spend it better than the government, more power to them. However one cannot ignore the obvious question; if these tax breaks, worked wouldn’t the economy be in better shape?

    September 16, 2010 02:01 pm at 2:01 pm |
  20. Dan

    Boehner who started as a janitor, worked his way up and is now heading the republicans in the house is an example of living the American dream without who knows how much foreign oil money support, how much affirmative action support and playing race cards on people, and without thinking America is a mean country...
    Obviously such a self-made guy is the target of the establishment led by all the above (though it was well hidden in 08).

    September 16, 2010 02:04 pm at 2:04 pm |
  21. John

    I know John Boehnor would lies that all REPUBLICAN do except if WALL STREET,BIG BUSINESS and the VERY RICH. That all REPUBLICAN stand for.

    September 16, 2010 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  22. King

    How many rich folks you see shopping at walmart or mammas or pappas store, how many rich folks you see shopping period. The fact is rich hardly spend money into the economy check their furniture from back in the 1930s. All rich folk do is make more money and america is not attractive any more because of high taxes and high labor cost, they are taking their tax break money from this economy to invest and bank for lower cost and better interest rates. Leaving our economy with less money so the rich get richer and the middle class and poor get poorer. Tax them obama, force them to keep their money in this economy not in china.

    September 16, 2010 02:07 pm at 2:07 pm |
  23. rs

    What about "temporary" do the Republicans not get? The Bush cuts were not meant to permanent. Giving away the treasury of this country to the wealthiest Americans makes no sense, wo't fix the recession, or make jobs. At best, 1 million jobs were produced in the private sector under Bush in 8 years- and they were lost in the first 6 weeks of the Bush recession in Sept/Oct. 2008. Giving millionaires money is a waste.

    If Republicans want to be seen as credible in trying to drop the deficit, we have to tax the wealthy, period. If not, they are as irresponsible now as they were under GW.

    If you are middle class- voting Republican is voting against your self-interest.

    September 16, 2010 02:10 pm at 2:10 pm |
  24. don

    Welcome back in line Mr Boehner. First we take care of the rich then the rest of us get the trickle down. REMEMBER!!!

    September 16, 2010 02:11 pm at 2:11 pm |
  25. T'SAH from Virginia

    "On the issue of job-killing tax hikes the American people are not going to accept anything less than the vote they deserve,"

    Aren't there jobs already KILLED now with the TAX CUTS already in place??? Isn't the loss of jobs stabilizing and the economy is getting better ‘slowly’ as expected? I always knew President Obama was on the RIGHT TRACK and he will get us out of this recession!!

    Then my question is – how is it that NOT extending the tax cuts for the WEALTHY a JOB KILLER??

    Dang – I see the RepubliCAN’Ts jumping on the band wagon because they know the stimulus worked, they really see things getting better and not WORST like they projected it to be – I see them now trying to get PROPS and CREDIT for what is already happening –Boehner ‘misstating’ his beliefs and then now, switching it up – I see that the RepubliCAN’Ts are reaching out to SOLVE things now instead of saying NO because they see the NEW TEApublicans are on the RISE, which makes them FEAR their JOBS, all of them, including the BLUE DOGS et al!!!

    And behind it all – I also see a VERY INTELLIGENT President who actually SETTING the STAGE for all to follow – defining the RepubliCAN’Ts for what they really are – which proves he is a great leader!! Think about it!!

    I am T’SAH and not the Impersonator who wants to be “T’SAH from Virginia” and I approve this message!!!

    September 16, 2010 02:12 pm at 2:12 pm |
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