November 18th, 2010
05:06 PM ET
12 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. Anonymous

    You have got to be kidding me. My wife and I have spent 6 years passing each other while working over a hundred hours a week to attain the American dream. How ironic coming from the family with the tv on 24/7 and McDonald's on the couch for family dinner. Why don't we all pay a flat tax, which is fair. It won't work because of a bunch of under achievers such as yourselves. The only difference between you and the panhandlers on the street is that you think you have class.

    November 18, 2010 07:36 pm at 7:36 pm |
  2. Jason Glugla

    If Obama caves on this like he has just about everything else, he should be prepared for the rest of his base to stay home in 2012.

    November 18, 2010 07:37 pm at 7:37 pm |
  3. paul

    Vote on this bill in two parts. Part one is for those making 250K or less. If this restore tax cuts for 98% of the people then who could be against it???? Pass this bill immediately. Part two, which appears to need further discussion, can be brought up by the Republicans in the house in January. Then, the R's can defend adding to the deficit for the top 2%. We will find out in a hurry if they really are the party of the rich.

    November 18, 2010 07:42 pm at 7:42 pm |
  4. George Morris

    Final paragraph...its funny for Rep Hoyer to say we can't afford to add $700B to the deficit but okay to add $3000B to the deficit by making the cuts permanent below 250k. Temp extend all for 2 years. If the economy returns by then, let them expire.

    November 18, 2010 07:51 pm at 7:51 pm |
  5. john

    Let it not be said that it was democratic controlled congress that extended the tax cuts for the wealthy. Because if this policy backfires you can bet your bottom dollar that the party of "no" will remind the dems. and the american electorate that it was a democratic controlled congress that pushed through these tax cuts, even though we all know that tax cuts have been championed by the GOP as the only way to jump start the economy for decades.

    November 18, 2010 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  6. ThinkAgain

    NO TAX CUTS FOR THE LEAST NEEDY AMONG US!!!!! Tax cuts DO NOT result in job creation here in the U.S.


    If tax cuts for the wealthy resulted in job creation, THEN WHERE IN THE HELL ARE ALL THE JOBS?!?

    And making the wealthy go from paying 36% to 39% is NOT a "tax hike!"

    They need to start pulling their weight – and stop sucking the lifeblood out of our country!

    November 18, 2010 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  7. Anonny De Mouse


    Actually... no, no I wouldn't. Why? Because it is already clear that we are extended well beyond our means as a nation. Not only to things need to be cut (and while it would be unfortunate if the Foodstamp system was one of them, because I believe it actually is a beneficial program for many suffering families), but we need to -raise- taxes; not just for the wealthy, but for everyone. Why? Because we cannot simply turn back the clock on debit with cuts alone.

    Think about it this way: if you take a loan to buy a new car, do you just stop using it because you can't afford it? No, not only do you have to cut back on your expenditures, but you have to pay back that loan (with interest, mind you) or you will only sink deeper into debit.

    In short: I find the belief that cutting expenditures alone can bring relief to our nation to be faulty at best. Why so called "Rich people" do not seem to comprehend this, I haven't the slightest notion.

    November 18, 2010 08:11 pm at 8:11 pm |
  8. ThinkAgain

    Hey, RichGOPGuy, I'm a Democrat and I'm anything but lazy! I've worked hard all my adult life, own a house that's being paid off 8 years ahead of schedule, have a sterling credit record – and have a hell of a lot more compassion for my fellow humans beings than you could ever dream of!

    I dare CNN to post this: F U to every single person who voted these yahoo Republicans into office! You are just as guilty as ruining our country as they are!

    November 18, 2010 08:13 pm at 8:13 pm |
  9. Sick and tired of bullies running the show

    Don't cave, Democrats! Stand up to these no-good, low-life, money-grubbing hypocritical Republicans!

    Let them try to pull their BS – and CALL THEM OUT!! Long, loud and hard!!!

    Republicans are hell-bent on destroying our country – DON'T LET THEM!!!

    November 18, 2010 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  10. JennyTX

    We can't afford to extend the tax cuts for the very wealthy!! They'll never spend that money on the rest of us, are you kidding??

    November 18, 2010 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  11. standingwave

    I'm curious. If the Republicans want to continue tax cuts for the wealthy how do they intend to pay for them? They have,after all, proven willing in the past to hold up jobless benefits on that issue.

    November 18, 2010 08:22 pm at 8:22 pm |
  12. Who'sNumbers

    Where does the $700 Billion figure come from? Will the politicians explain the numbers and stop throwing out outlandish figures as scare tactics ? How can 2 % of the population's tax burden be $700B ?? Lay out the math and help us figure this out please.

    November 18, 2010 08:25 pm at 8:25 pm |
  13. Kostonian

    I'd say raise the max to $500,000 or even up to $900,000 as long as unemployment benefit extension is included. Offer to allow the GOP to bring over $1M tax-cuts next year. Let them convince 99% of America what side they're really on. This was the party who squandered surpluses and left deficits when they controlled all 3 branches under Bush. Or the GOP can balk because million dollar income earners aren't getting their tax cuts – see what sympathy that generates. Because the only jobs those people create are for the Chinese.

    November 18, 2010 08:29 pm at 8:29 pm |
  14. TamarS

    It will be criminal if ANY representative votes to extend tax cuts to the wealthy. The tax cuts were in place as jobs, banks and real estate imploded three years ago and it won't help now. Any legislator who says they will is a blowhard and should be kicked out of office. Or, they could run away like Sarah Palin did from the governorship of Alaska when she got too much scrutiny too.

    November 18, 2010 08:38 pm at 8:38 pm |
  15. Roland

    Just do it Democrats. The tax cuts for the wealthy have just lined thier pockets. Where are all of the jobs this was supposed to create? It will raise their tax base only slightly, and they can afford it. For once American's stand up for yourselves, not the 1% who own more and more of you on a daily basis.

    November 18, 2010 08:41 pm at 8:41 pm |
  16. kyle

    The GOP plan: end extended unemployment for the poor, and middle class, and extend tax cuts for the rich.

    November 18, 2010 08:43 pm at 8:43 pm |
  17. Johnny B Good

    No more tax cuts. We have to come to terms with two wars debts. Let's get our house in order and stop spending.

    November 18, 2010 08:45 pm at 8:45 pm |
  18. JR

    Seems a clear opportunity for the GOP to show who they want to represent, the middle class or the 2% of rich people in the country, want to bet where their loyalties lie?

    November 18, 2010 08:46 pm at 8:46 pm |
  19. Charlie from the North

    Sure I would take a tax cut. I make way less than 250k but I want our leaders to hear me loud and clear: If I have to allow the rich SOB's who put this country in the mess we're in keep their tax -cut in order to keep mine then I want no part of it. If you have to Democrats, do what te GOP wants you to do so badly. Do Nothing! Let the Bush Error tax cuts wither on the vine then sweep them into the dust bin of history were they belong.

    November 18, 2010 08:48 pm at 8:48 pm |
  20. Marie MD

    How nice of them to go have a BIG thanksgiving dinner when they just screwed those who still can't find jobs. Then again, they will extend tax cuts for the super rich because, after all, why help the middle class. They were either relected or are new and already showing their fangs.

    November 18, 2010 08:58 pm at 8:58 pm |
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