House GOP agrees to two-month extension of payroll tax cut
Ari Fleischer was out flacking for the GOP yesterday, trying to position this defeat as the Republicans really just wanting to extend the tax break for a full year. We all know that’s bullshit disguised with a happy face sticker.
The GOP has had two years to extend this, two years in which they controlled the house and owned the budgeting responsibility of getting this done. The sad fact is that they are protecting very narrow special interests - they won’t pass a tax cut extension unless it makes up the shortfall by taxing you instead of their very special interest uber rich donors.
Facing withering criticism from across the political spectrum and abandoned by Senate allies, House Republicans bowed to political reality Thursday and agreed to a two-month extension of a payroll tax cut for 160 million Americans.
The agreement represented a remarkable capitulation on the part of House Republicans, who had two days earlier rejected such a deal with Democrats as the kind of half-measure that their new majority was elected to thwart.
And it amounts to a Christmas gift for President Obama, who attempted to paint his Republican opponents as willing to raise taxes for millions of Americans. Such an image could have cost the party politically just as it is gearing up to try to take back the White House and the Senate in 2012.
The agreement resolved the last stalemate in a year of bitter congressional fighting that earned lawmakers their lowest approval ratings in recent memory.