McConnell breaks silence on payroll tax cut
December 22nd, 2011
10:59 AM ET
2 years ago

McConnell breaks silence on payroll tax cut

(CNN) - Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, urged House Republicans Thursday to pass a short-term extension of the expiring payroll tax cut - similar to a two-month measure demanded by President Barack Obama and congressional Democrats. McConnell also urged Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nevada, to appoint conferees to a House-Senate conference committee - something demanded by House Republicans.

McConnell's statement:

"The House and Senate have both passed bipartisan bills to require the President to quickly make a decision on whether to support thousands of U.S. manufacturing jobs through the Keystone XL pipeline, and to extend unemployment insurance, the temporary payroll tax cut and seniors' access to medical care. There is no reason why Congress and the President cannot accomplish all of these things before the end of the year. House Republicans sensibly want greater certainty about the duration of these provisions, while Senate Democrats want more time to negotiate the terms. These goals are not mutually exclusive. We can and should do both. Working Americans have suffered enough from the President's failed economic policies and shouldn't face the uncertainty of a New Year's Day tax hike. Leader Reid should appoint conferees on the long-term bill and the House should pass an extension that locks in the thousands of Keystone XL pipeline jobs, prevents any disruption in the payroll tax holiday or other expiring provisions, and allows Congress to work on a solution for the longer extensions."


Filed under: Congress • Harry Reid • House • Mitch McConnell • Senate
soundoff (50 Responses)
  1. john w

    he breaks silent but deadly, but more like him should follow in his steps. Thats what bipartisanship is about.

    December 22, 2011 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  2. HaditwithGOP

    GOP needs to take the pipeline off the bill, the bill's main focus was to be the extension. The GOP has made the bill their private I want to have bill by attaching something that the Democrats don't want this way they can force hold the extension hostage by saying give me what I want or else. I am tired of the bully tatics the GOP continue to play. They say they want the Democrats to comprimise, on what I ask. It seems to me that is the only group doing the comprimising is the Democrats. Dems wanted a tax increase on those making over a million, GOP says no. So Dems give in and say we will pay for it this way, GOP says okay, but wait now we want to have you pass this pipeline deal along with it. Vote out GOP! From a former Replublican you are losing more people than you are gaining by continuing this way of my way or the highway.

    December 22, 2011 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  3. last laugh

    Yup, it's easy to see where this issue will end. The right will loose... again.

    December 22, 2011 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  4. Fair is Fair

    Biden says it's patriotic to pay taxes. I say let it expire and be patriots.

    December 22, 2011 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  5. Greg in Arkansas

    Skip the House-Senate conference committee.....recess congress and allow Obama to make recess appointments to fill all the positions the GOP has been blocking....come back and make the tax-cut retro to the first of the year....problem solved....

    December 22, 2011 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  6. Sarah

    I wish he hadn't broken his silence. A silent Mitch McConnell is my dream. Just imagine what could be done for the people of America if he and his friend Boehner stopped saying 'no' in their attempt to gain power next time round.

    December 22, 2011 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  7. Lynda/Minnesota

    Here's my statement:

    Hey, Mitch. Why not surprised us (well, those of us in the middle class, anyway) and drop the all the "attachments" (ie lobbyist wish lists) and vote on the bill on it's merits alone. You know. Keep the tax credit as it stands without the GOPer talking point BS. I understand this is a relatively new idea and all, (no freebies to the lobbyists) but seems to reason that all those attachments Boehner and Company keep adding are getting in the way. Especially for those of us who actually do vote.

    I know, I know. It's your goal to make President Obama a one termer. Got that on Inauguration Day.

    December 22, 2011 11:33 am at 11:33 am |
  8. Paul

    Do the republicans have an end game? Or do they just want to keep putting off relief for millions of Americans, untill we agree to submit to their disastrous ideas on the environment and the economy.

    December 22, 2011 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  9. MsIntellect

    "the House should pass an extension that locks in the thousands of Keystone XL pipeline jobs," – Uhhh wait a minute. I thought the provision only required Obama make a decision, Not agree to the pipeline ???

    December 22, 2011 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  10. C

    Dear Congressman Reid, McConnell, Boehner and Congresswoman Pelosi - Retire. You are ruining this country, and the four of you are the face of our downfall. You are all disgraceful.

    December 22, 2011 11:36 am at 11:36 am |
  11. Paul

    Remember that when a republican says something, it is not ment as a factual comment.

    December 22, 2011 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  12. ryland

    It's very simple speaker boehner just bring the bill to the floor for a up or down vote and push back at those tea party rookies in your party.

    December 22, 2011 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  13. vic , nashville ,tn

    Player who is Checkmated loss the game is that simple
    Time for republicans start new game

    December 22, 2011 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  14. PA_outofwork

    The House should make one change to the Senate bill, change the tax cut expiration date to 12-31-2011; then pass the bill, leave it back in the Senate and on Obama to resolve the issue.

    December 22, 2011 11:44 am at 11:44 am |
  15. PA_outofwork

    correction – change the tax cut expiration date to 12-31-2012; then pass the bill, leave it back in the Senate and on Obama to resolve the issue.

    December 22, 2011 11:45 am at 11:45 am |
  16. jersvette

    McConnell does a great job of playing both sides of the fence, but if you look closely at what he says when discussing the issues the one he cites first and foremost to republicans is the Keystone XL pipeline:

    " ... the Keystone XL pipeline, and to extend unemployment insurance, the temporary payroll tax cut and seniors' access to medical care".

    This isn't by accident.

    December 22, 2011 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  17. willie floyd

    I think the days of Reps. DEMANDING anything are long gone. As long as the House continues to tack on totally unrelated items, i.e. pipeline, to their bills, nothing will change. If they want to create jobs get them on infrastructure or remodeling decrepid schools-better yet- build more refineries so we can keep our oil here rather than sending it overseas so it can be resold to us for a profit for the Arab countries. The Repubs. have no concern for the health of folks in the midwest where their water is contaminated and making them ill.

    PLEASE POST THIS CNN

    December 22, 2011 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  18. Deeb

    Well...well....the grand wizard finally speaks...and he didn't hesitate to take a jab at the president while he was at it with his statement "Working Americans have suffered enough from the President's failed economic policies and shouldn't face the uncertainty of a New Year's Day tax hike." Really? Why can't these clowns keep the blame where it belongs? Stick to the issue at hand without attaching on something else (Keystone XL pipeline) that has nothing to do whatsoever with preventing the tax increase. Such cowards and frauds....truly pathetic. 2012. I. Can't. Wait.

    December 22, 2011 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  19. Thomas

    It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas !

    I sent my do nothing Representative Darrell E. Issa (R – CA) an email . Who want's to by a used car alarm ?

    December 22, 2011 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  20. McCain-in-4

    The Republicans in the House of Representatives have done little-to-NOTHING to show comity towards the Senate or their fellow representatives. Note: the House did not vote on the Senate Bill, it instead chose to vote on a Sense-of-the House measure towards the Senate Bill. Why should the Senate return just to have House Republicans continue to taunt and jeer and generally behave poorly?

    The House wants the Senate to return just so that the Senate can share blame when the House's pork-laden deal falls through. Anyone consider the Eminent Domain issues that the House obviously considered acceptable?

    December 22, 2011 12:08 pm at 12:08 pm |
  21. Voice of Reason

    You know its bad when McConnell is "to the left" of the rest of his party. It seems that the House GOP is more than comfortable holding a gun to the collective heads of the American people and demanding a ransom.

    The irony is that it's not even that big a deal. The President, the entire Senate and the democrats in the House want a two=month extension on the payroll tax cut. The House GOP's biggest problem with that? They want it to be for a year. That's it! Talk about splitting hairs and straining at a gnat!

    What they'll end up with is failure, and taxes going up on everyone instead. Good going Boehner, hope you enjoyed your last term in Congress.

    December 22, 2011 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  22. T'sah from Virginia

    ►McConnell breaks silence on payroll tax cut◄
    Past the 2-month extension bill – get off your BUTT
    But the HOUSE is caught between a rock and a hard place
    Being "Head Strong & Dead" and not knowing how to "about face"

    President Obama – Please stand STRONG – Obama 2012!!

    December 22, 2011 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  23. Gino Martell

    Oh how I wish the GOP would stop playing games to score points. Do what is correct for the country. We independents are watching and come NOvember...

    December 22, 2011 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  24. AK_steve

    The republicans spent months and months fighting tooth and nail to prevent a small tax increase on the wealthiest 1% of Americans. But when it comes to giving tax breaks to the middle class they walk out of congress and go home.

    Wake up American... look who the GOP is fighting for! They'll go to the mat for their rich campaign supporters, but barely got their seats warm fighting for middle America.

    December 22, 2011 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  25. jim

    Quick! Some say this is just the Democrats being obstructionist before any notices the facts!

    December 22, 2011 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
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