November 18th, 2010
05:06 PM ET
4 years ago

House and Senate Democrats plan tax cut votes after Thanksgiving

Washington (CNN) – Democratic leaders in the House and the Senate have decided to move ahead with votes after Thanksgiving to extend the Bush tax cuts for those making $250,000 or less.

These decisions come hours after Democratic leaders met at the White House with President Obama, where several sources say they talked extensively about the tax cuts. Until now, how or whether Democrats would proceed on the thorny issue of extending the Bush era tax cuts was unresolved.

In the House, Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told CNN that Democratic leaders have scheduled a vote. "At least that will be available for members to have a vote on," Hoyer said.

What is still unclear is if that House vote would extend so-called middle class tax cuts permanently, or just on a temporary basis.

In the Senate, Majority Leader Harry Reid said he plans to vote on the middle class tax cut extension most Democrats want, but he will also allow Republicans to hold a vote on what they are demanding: a permanent extension of all Bush-era tax cuts.

"We want to give the Republicans an opportunity to vote on McConnell's legislation," Reid said. He also said he might hold multiple votes on the issue, "If we have to do it more than once, twice, to show the American people that we support the middle class."

Reid said he is not sure whether the Democrats' legislation in the Senate would be a permanent extension for those making $250,000 or less, or temporary. The Senate Democratic caucus appears to be split on that.

"We have to be very, very careful extending things indefinitely because we have to focus on what the economy might be in the future," said Reid.

It is unclear if Democrats in either chamber have enough votes to pass only the middle class tax cuts. Democratic leaders are leaving open the possibility of compromise with Republicans if their measures do not pass. In fact,

Democratic sources say Obama made clear in Thursday's meeting they may ultimately need to find a middle ground.

House Majority Leader Steny H. Hoyer (D- Maryland) released a statement regarding an extension of middle class tax cuts:

“The House will vote on an extension of middle class tax cuts before they expire. Democrats are firmly committed to continuing tax cuts for middle class families on income up to $250,000. We cannot afford to add $700 billion to the deficit to benefit the wealthiest Americans with almost no economic benefit as Republicans want to do," Hoyer said in the statement.


Filed under: Congress • Democrats
soundoff (95 Responses)
  1. Greg in Cabot, AR

    Tax cuts for the rich will NOT create new jobs.....how many jobs have been lost since the Bush tax cuts for the rich were put into place???

    Tax cuts for the rich WILL ensure political contributions for future elections.....nothing more...

    November 18, 2010 05:19 pm at 5:19 pm |
  2. GJ

    How about...try to pass the middle class tax cuts, and if the R's disagree, then they will hold the reponsibility of hurting the middle class to protect the rich. Have a spine, Obama.

    November 18, 2010 05:27 pm at 5:27 pm |
  3. NC

    Democrats just do it. The party of No are like 2 year olds.

    November 18, 2010 05:28 pm at 5:28 pm |
  4. Don't cave Democrats! We got your back on this one!

    Stick to your guns Democrats! The rich has so much money they can afford to sit on it while the middle class Americans can't get a job or UNC benefits. We need the tax cuts monies to invest in America. Plus, you don't want to be the party that is giving tax cuts to the rich, but asking everyone else to chip in to help the deficit. If the Republicans want tax cuts that bad let them pass when they get the house.

    November 18, 2010 05:36 pm at 5:36 pm |
  5. kevin

    Dems can force the Repubs to vote for a simple bill with no fluff and add-ons. No Repub could justify voting against a one-page bill that cuts taxes for 98% of Americans.

    This is probably the Dems last chance to show they can be reasonable in governing and to make amends for that bloated 1050+ page health care bill.

    November 18, 2010 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  6. CTinDC

    Democrats.. Be strong!! Stick to your guns, do what you have to do. Expose the Republians.. .CALL their bluff. Go for it, ALL of your base will be revitalized and start believing the the strong party you are. Push the Agenda!!

    November 18, 2010 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  7. GODZILLA1

    Ah yes – a debate on whether or not to continue groveling before the economic fat cats – why not?

    November 18, 2010 05:47 pm at 5:47 pm |
  8. JOhn

    Be careful of what you wish for, you might get it!! One PPP (presidential party in power) 8.4 trillion of the 13 trillion federal deficit occurred during their watch, the other about 4.6 trillion, as of today.....One PPP has a net annual % return on the stock market, over the last 80 years of 2%, the other 13%.,One PPP has had 9 of the last 10 recessions begin during their term in office, the other 1 recession began (1980). One PPP has been in power in 9 year-ends of plus 7% unemployment, and the other 3 year-ends of plus 7%, including 2010. One PPP is (are) GOP presidents), the other is (are) Demo presidents. Again, be careful of what you wish for, you might get it (again).

    November 18, 2010 05:50 pm at 5:50 pm |
  9. Liberal4Obama

    Republicans are only concerned about the rich, thats where all that campaign money comes from.

    November 18, 2010 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  10. Anonymous

    obma needs to step down

    November 18, 2010 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  11. KatR

    Although I favor the cuts expiring for wealthy ciizens only....I can't help but ponder the idea that letting the cuts expire for everyone would go a long way towards reducing the deficit.

    November 18, 2010 05:52 pm at 5:52 pm |
  12. RichGOPGuy

    Bah! You're all whining because the threshold for cuts is above your earnings. If the cuts were to the foodstamp system, then all you lazy democrats would become the "party of no".

    November 18, 2010 05:55 pm at 5:55 pm |
  13. Sherri W.W.

    President Obama~~PLEASE,PLEASE BRING EVERYTHING TO THE AMERICAN PEOPLE~EXPLAIN! AND EXPLAIN AGAIN,THE INS&OUTS OF EVERY IMPORTANT ISSUE~from Tax Cuts for Middle class&Poor ONLY~an extension~we cant afford permanent~to the START T.with Russia,to UNEMPLOYMENT WHICH GOP WOULD NOT PASS TODAY WHILE ASKING FOR TAX CUTS FOR THE RICH!~~We DO have your back Sir~just come to all of us and TELL US WHAT WE NEED TO KNOW TO BENEFIT THE MIDDLE CLASS AND POOR!! Most of us will NOT vote AGAINST ourselves again,if you do that!!The Middle class IS America,and most of the time we are smarter than some of us were on Nov 2 of this year,I PROMISE you. Thank You Mr President,for all you are trying to do for us.

    November 18, 2010 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  14. john

    When we talk abt tax cuts democrats use the term middle class cuts and republicans use the term everybody coz they don't want to say rich people sound so bad

    November 18, 2010 05:58 pm at 5:58 pm |
  15. Seth

    It's about goddamn time the Dems got some backbone and exposed the Repubilcans as the Corporatists they are.

    November 18, 2010 06:03 pm at 6:03 pm |
  16. JOhn

    Really want to cut the deficit? The 10 year savings for not caving to the richest 2% is 2 trillion.....that figure represents about 15% of our current deficit.......If you want to start somewhere, all you have to do is tell the richest 2% that they will re-inherit the second lowest federal maximum tax rate in history (39.6%) rather than the lowest in history (35%)...Anyone know what maximum tax rate Reagan instituted in 1981?.............................................50%...............and he is the hero?

    November 18, 2010 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  17. King

    Lesson repugs how many more evidence you need to see that ten years of the bush tax cut don't work. In a ideal capitalistic system the poor and the middle class would spend money and creat demands that goes up to the rich, that's their job to creat demand. The rich then take all the demand and creat more businesses and creat jobs that what the rich should do. Obama and dems has created an environment so that the middle class and poor creats demand, by enacting the stimulous package. The rich on the other hand refuse to added to their side of the system by creating jobs to the middle class and poor to keep the cycle going. They've opted to just let the trillions of dollars we the demand side gave them to just sit on the side lines for no apparent reason and refuse to do their side of the capitalistic system creating jobs. The rich claim that they are doing this because they don't want their taxes to be raised. they are lying. The rich don't want to pay American salaries so they are saving up their money and trying to get more federal tax cut money to open factories in china, paying them half the salaries, less taxes, and way more customers then taking the little jobs we have left to please their customers abroad. The rich think they can tell the American people any thing because they think all of us are stupid. But there are few of us that won't fall for fox entertainment news and their paranoia skitsofrenia brain washing crap.

    November 18, 2010 06:05 pm at 6:05 pm |
  18. Lindsay

    OMg! I'm so sick of everyone incorrectly calling these tax cuts!!! EVERYONE has been paying their same tax rate for 7 years. The Congress either votes to keep the tax rates the same, or they vote to increase them, period. No one is getting a damn tax cut! Personally, I don't want to rich to get their tax rates increased, because that's money they won't invest, won't spend out to eat or in other disposable areas, which means that guys and gals that earn tips for a living and work in minimum wage jobs, guess what, AREN'T GETTING PAID. I swear, I just wish people would use common, logical sense when it came to economics. Everyone benefits, when everyone has lower tax rates, period.

    November 18, 2010 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  19. Wow

    umm the rich already pay the majority of taxes so any benefits you all are receiving should thank the rich. it is time to start contributing everyone's own fair shair. Plus it will cost $700 billion to extend the tax cuts for the "rich" (even though i would not consider $250,000 rich) try comparing that to the 3 TRILLION it will cost for the middle class tax cuts!!!!!! it is not even about reducing the deficit, just trying to blame people who work hard and are successful.

    November 18, 2010 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  20. Dave

    The Bush tax cuts were not just for the rich.
    What our esteemed politicians do not understand is the cost to open a business and that the note payment is made with after tax money.
    I have a business that makes $250k. After current state and federal income taxesand property taxes, I am left with $145k
    I pay $70k per year in principal on the note I financed the company with.
    This leaves $75k as my disposable income.
    So I get $75k and have paid $105k in taxes. Doesn't make we want to expand and hire.
    NO More frickin taxes.

    November 18, 2010 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  21. Will

    So we will give tax cuts to the upper class and decline extensions for Unemployment. Yeah, I'd say things are getting better for the American people every day. /sarcasm

    November 18, 2010 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  22. Concerned

    I wish Obama would do what he said he would do. Extend the tax cuts for the middle class and let them expire for the wealthy. Frankly, I think the wealthy should pay 50% or more just like they did in the past. Then don't go to war like we did in Iraq and cut defense spending by 25%. In addition, impeach the Supreme Court members who ditched the campaign finance law and turned the recent election into a travesty. If Obama doesn't do something right soon I will not vote for him. Please grow a pair and do what people who voted for you wanted you to do. Calling Bill Clinton and that surplus that's so long ago and far away. If people follow the what the Republicans want to do the deficit will quadruple in five years. They're just crooks with ties to the extremely wealthy. The distribution of wealth of this once great country is embarrassing and impossible to defend by anybody.

    November 18, 2010 06:14 pm at 6:14 pm |
  23. Sniffit

    To be fair, EVERYONE gets a tax cuts if they pass what are being called the "tax cuts for the middle-class." It's a cut on your taxes for your first $250K of income, no matter what you're total income is. The "tax cuts for the rich" are tax cuts on income beyond the $250K. Don't be fooled by corporate wh-re GOPers and conservatives running around pulling their hair out as if voting on the tax cuts for the middle class somehow completely excludes the rich. It doesn't.

    November 18, 2010 06:18 pm at 6:18 pm |
  24. Mike Dallas

    Let them all expire on 12/31 as intended.

    We cannot afford another 4 trillion added to the deficit.

    But not to worry Obama will cave to the Reds and the rich will get richer!

    November 18, 2010 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  25. Henry

    The article repeats a common misperception. It is NOT a tax cut for those making $250,000 or less. It is a tax cut on EVERYONE's first $250,000 of income. So, yes, even the rich would be getting a tax cut. It only makes sense to vote on this separately. Both Democrats and Republicans agree on this extension, so why not vote on something that is agreed? The tax cut for incomes over $250,000 is contentious and should logically be voted on separately.

    November 18, 2010 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
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