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. Rob Dean

    Well, if they choose not to extend the cuts to those over $250K a year we will just move our money off shore, legally, and avoid paying these ridiculous taxes. If the lazy fools refuse to work and pay their own way, then too bad because we are sick and tired of these welfare cheats stealing our hard earned money. We can hire more people but will not until the Obamacare garbage is abandoned. We are not going to continue to support those who refuse to pay their own way. We want more tax cuts for everyone, a flat tax so that everyone pays their fair share, and an end to welfare and unemployment. If you need a government loan to get by, fine, but you pay it back with interest. No more AFDC (if you have kids, YOU support them), no more employer paid unemployment/disability, no more tax refunds if YOU did not pay in taxes! Enough is enough! We support the FairTax – where everyone pays what is fair for themselves. It is MY money, not Obama's money! Already moving the funds as we speak, legally, and without any tax burden – in fact I get a better tax-free return overseas than I get by investing here in the US! So, you welfare cheats will just have to figure how to get your own food, gas and housing because I am not paying for you anymore!

    November 18, 2010 06:45 pm at 6:45 pm |
  2. rdlewis

    here we go again thinking only that the democrats are the only ones on foodstamps ,poor and uneducated.As a child it was hard for me to understand why it would hard for a rich man to go to heaven but as time wewnt by now I know it maybe cause he never would be able to turn down take plate that he has always been able to eat off of and have to compassion for those that are less fortunate then he is.the same principles applys here .one day that day will come when we will all had to answer to a much higher calling and then and only then we will judge by the book of righteousness and it won't matter what party we belong to.we should be our brother's keeper.

    November 18, 2010 06:48 pm at 6:48 pm |
  3. Rob Dean

    Oh yeah, forgot – no more food stamps or debit cards. My gosh man, get a job and take care of yourself and your family. If you cannot afford to, then don't have kids. Your wife needs to work and your kids need to work. And you need to pay taxes too! If you need temporary help from the government that is fine, but you need to pay it back when you get the next job. No more free rides. Take responsibility for yourself – rely on yourself – anyone can make millions – but you have to get off your rear end and work!

    November 18, 2010 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  4. yep

    No, I do not make over $250,000 but I am in no way lazy nor are the majority of democrats lazy. I don't sit on my ass in an office like the top 2% of financial earners in the country...I am a therapist who is on my feet, demonstrating exercises, and lifting humans all day. I think that is far harder work and likely more beneficial to society than pushing a pen. The rich people that haven't suffered the job losses...they keep their mega million dollar jobs while the real hard workers are unemployed.

    November 18, 2010 06:50 pm at 6:50 pm |
  5. Chineka

    That person whose critizing people who are getting foodstamp because they need their family, need to walk a mile these people foodstamp recipent shoes, because they money because lost their jobs, and without a job you can't get paid to feed your family and etc....

    November 18, 2010 06:51 pm at 6:51 pm |
  6. Mark

    JOhn: Re-check your stats based on who controls Congress, the money spending entity...

    November 18, 2010 06:52 pm at 6:52 pm |
  7. socalgal

    First, these would not be tax cuts – they would be keeping current taxes as they are. Secondly, I don't know where you live but where I am $250K before business expenses barely pays the bills. (I am far, far below this threshold). Lastly, in my sorry state of CA, the mindless have just re-elected the fox to guard the henhouse and our taxes will be going up dramatically. $250K before expenses will be considered poverty level. PS. I don't believe in giving tax 'refunds' to those who don't pay taxes to begin with, nor do I wish to live in poverty to support those who have golden retirement benefits contracts. Lastly, I don't think anyone has a true problem with paying taxes...just that it is negligently, incorrectly and corruptly spent.

    November 18, 2010 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  8. Susan

    Class warfare once again by the Dems, I am so sick of it. Rich, poor, middle class, white, black, hispanic, old, young, educated, high school grads, etc. Let's all be Americans and skip the division.

    November 18, 2010 06:53 pm at 6:53 pm |
  9. Brenda

    Oh yes, lets punish the people making over 250,000/year. We all know they were born with a silver spoon in their mouth. Are you kidding me? Most everyone I know who makes more than that either went to college for decades to get highly specialized educations OR worked 100+ hrs/week, making peanuts for decades, while they built their business and are finally reaping the BENEFITS OF HARD WORK. Only liberals think "the rich"don't deserve their hard earned money. Maybe if some of you weren't so lazy and worked hard for decades you too could be ridiculed by the masses for being "rich". You tax the rich people are fools. Bush's tax cut was for EVERYONE and every tax bracket. He helped everyone, but all you liberals can do is say "bush's tax cut for the rich". You are like a Nancy Pelosi bobble-head doll

    November 18, 2010 06:54 pm at 6:54 pm |
  10. Henry Miller

    The number of whining losers who want to force the so-called "rich"–i.e., competent, productive, people–to pay for their government freebies is both amazing and disgusting. Don't you people have even a shred of integrity or self-respect? Do you think this country grew from a ragged collection of colonies to a global super-power by punishing hard work and allowing the lazy to sponge off those who work hard?

    November 18, 2010 07:01 pm at 7:01 pm |
  11. BAT

    The 'rich' and I guess I am one based on the fact I make more than $250K already pay the disproportionate share of taxes in this country. I am an expatriate Canadian and I moved to the U.S. because it was an environment where every individual could make the most (or not) of his situation. A true entrepreneurial spirit. What the democrats are proposing will stifle investment (who do all of you think is buying commodities, investing in companies, building businesses that employee people – those earning <$50K per year???) and in the long run is not going to help the country or the economy. The real problem, if people have not had the brain power to figure this out, is not a REVENUE problem. It is an EXPENDITURE problem. We are spending HUGE sums on defence, government, education, medicare and medicaid (and earmarks!). This is where the focus needs to be.

    Extend the tax cuts, permanently and for all. And let's get on with re-defining why we have government in the first place!

    November 18, 2010 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  12. dkholdem

    I would appear the uneducated, unmotivated and unsuccessful folks want to continue to have those that have support those who have not. I you people want more, go back to school, get more training, work a little harder and maybe you can make your own way instead of having me and other successful folks support you and our families

    November 18, 2010 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  13. Former Republican, now an Independent

    It's time the Democrats stand up and defend the middle class and resist tax cuts for the wealthy who invest their money overseas. Let the nation see that the Republicans are putting 3% of the nation above the workers.

    November 18, 2010 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  14. TJeff1776

    Conser(Repub) don't deny being THE party of small and/or big business. Its their main source of income. I have No problems with that. Indeed, job don't come from the poor or even the middle. BUT the pendulum(wealthy) has swung too
    far- MUCH too far to the right. They REALLY see no wrong in buyig off the peoples reps in congress. Indeed, they OWN
    the congress. BUT they don't own the people YET. BUT they do own the propaganda machine that deceives the gullible
    American public and THAT is gonna be hard to fix. BUT not impossible to fix.

    November 18, 2010 07:05 pm at 7:05 pm |
  15. phil

    What is there to even talk about. We are in two unpaid for wars the economy is in the gutter and we are to dumbed down as a people to see that greed and selfishness masked in the almighty red white and blue on all sides of issues is taking us hell in a hand basket. None of us are getting out of this alive..just someone do what's right for his fellow man...we need a leader and one with a spine as well to lead us into the future that none of us are going to recognize. Its a changing world without us to pillage and police. Tax the rich they can handle a few lousy per cent for the well being of the whole including themselves. Cut the defencce budget ...a lot invest in research that may help save us as a nation and as a people. The Palins and Channeys and Bushs of the world need to be seen for what they are...and that is not a pretty sight.

    November 18, 2010 07:06 pm at 7:06 pm |
  16. John Weatherly

    I have yet to hear a real reason for extending these tax cuts when we face such mounting debt. At the very least, do NOT extend the cuts for the persons who need it the least (or not at all). Maybe the threshold needs to be raised to a million so that those legislators who oppose have to make a real case as to why. The 'straw man' reason of job creation has no merit given that these tax cuts have existed for eight years with NO job creation as a result. Mr. President, please return to the positions that made me have hope for real change! JRW

    November 18, 2010 07:10 pm at 7:10 pm |
  17. william moncrief

    Any cuts should start with Congress; t6he one's willing to spend billions on elections but not on heath-care reform or cutting wall street billions.
    Our represents want to live like royality while their mconstituents starve or live on the street.
    How about leading the way with some cuts in benefits for them selves.

    November 18, 2010 07:19 pm at 7:19 pm |
  18. Harold Trainer, USAF RET

    How are we going to pay for the wars if we cut taxes which will cost trillions of dollars over the next ten years. If the Republicans refuse to go along with tax expiration for the top 2 % it may be necessary to cut military pay and increase military health care charges, cut social security, cut medicare, cut medicaid and these cuts are in fact tax increases but by those who can least afford it. In our entangled mess and house of cards any cuts in services now provided add up to a tax increase which is forbidden by Republicans. How are we going to pay for the war? Bring the troops home now, all of them and use the savings to reduce our debt. It is simple. Why do we support these wars when we do not support our own homeland.

    November 18, 2010 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  19. william moncrief

    Any cuts should start with Congress; the one's willing to spend billions on elections but not on heath-care reform or cutting wall street billions.
    Our represents want to live like royality while their constituents starve or live on the street.
    How about leading the way with some cuts in benefits for them selves.

    November 18, 2010 07:20 pm at 7:20 pm |
  20. Harold Trainer, USAF RET

    Why isnn't ending the wars now at the top of everyone's cost savings and spending cuts list? Why can we not end the wars and save the money? Why is this not being addressed by Boener, McConnell, Ryan, Pelosi, Reid, Obama etc.??? Why???

    November 18, 2010 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  21. Sydney Australia

    The Dems are the party of YES! YES! YES! Tax more, Tax the wealthy so then they can fund their DreamAct, give medical care to illegals, give free or instate tuition to illegals. Dems are the party of La Raza – just looking for votes.

    November 18, 2010 07:22 pm at 7:22 pm |
  22. Fig1024

    Since both parties agree on passing tax cuts for everyone under $250, why not do that first, do that quickly – show off to the public their successful bypartisan effort. And THEN, after that's settled, start arguing and stalling about tax cuts for the rich.

    Why hold the poor people hostage to political games? Do what can be done easily first!

    November 18, 2010 07:28 pm at 7:28 pm |
  23. Donaize

    Somebody needs to address this $700 billion that's always tossed around – not one politician on either side of the aisle will say publicly what a recent report does – that by extending tax cuts to the middle class permanently will cost this country over $3.4+ TRILLION – is that not going to add to the deficit as well????????????????????

    November 18, 2010 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  24. Jim in San Mateo

    Let me see if I get the right. We're going to borrow money to give it away to those who don't need it, want it or have asked for it? Would any of us do that with our own finances?

    I love how everybody seems to want to talk about tax cuts, but no one wants to talk about how to pay for them? Somehow that doesn't seem strange?

    November 18, 2010 07:32 pm at 7:32 pm |
  25. Four and The Door

    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.
    _________________________________________________________________________________________________
    Someone needs to bring Hoyer and the rest of the Democrats up to speed on the unemployment numbers. On the other hand, maybe they really do know it's functionally approaching 20% and they just don't care.

    Their answer to high unemployment is to perpetuate unemployment benefits. How is this solving anything?

    November 18, 2010 07:35 pm at 7:35 pm |
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