Democrats Plan Tax Cut Vote after Election

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Senate Democrats plan to hold a vote on the Bush tax cuts extension soon after the mid-term election in November, congressional leaders indicated.

Senate Majority Whip Dick Durbin, D-Ill., said on CNN’s “State of the Union” on Sunday that Democrats would unite behind legislation to extend the tax cuts for those making less than $250,000 a year, and he believes some Republicans will agree to support them.

“Some Democrats would say, ‘Well, perhaps we would do it a little bit differently,’” he said. “But if that position doesn’t prevail, and I don’t think it will, then the ultimate choice is going to be whether or not we have the $250,000 income threshold for these tax cuts. I think at that time, we’ll have the support of all the Democrats, as well as some Republicans.”

However, Durbin told CNN’s Candy Crowley that Democrats do not yet have the votes to pass the tax cuts legislation before the election. “I can count, and I know you can too. We have 59 Democrats and not a single Republican in the Senate supports our position.”

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said the House may vote on the tax cuts before the election. “We take it one day at a time,” she told reporters on Friday. “But let me be very clear, as we have all been clear in the House Democratic leadership: America’s middle class will have a tax cut. There is no question about that.”

However, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer, D-Md., said he doubted the House would hold a vote before the election. “The Senate has refused to move forward on that issue,” he said on “Fox News Sunday.” “They can’t move it through the Senate. So it would be a specious act.”

House Minority Leader John Boehner, D-Ohio, criticized Democrats for delaying a vote. “Congress has an opportunity this week to end some of the uncertainty by allowing the American people to know what the tax rates are going to be at the end of the year,” he said on “Fox News Sunday.” “To adjourn without dealing with this means that in their minds, the elections are more important than jobs for the American people.”

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., called for extending the tax cuts for taxpayers at all income levels. “The question is, do we raise taxes in the middle of a very, very tough economy,” he said on ABC’s “This Week.” “All the Republicans think that’s a bad idea and a substantial number of Democrats think the same thing.”

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