Daily Tax Update - December 19, 2012: President Obama: "Take The Deal"

PRESIDENT OBAMA:  “TAKE THE DEAL”:  Today, in a press conference, President Obama urged Republicans to "take the deal."  Obama said "You look at [House] Speaker [John] Boehner's proposal and you look at my proposal, they're actually pretty close."  Obama added, "They keep finding ways to say no rather than to say yes. . . . At some point they’ve got to take me out of it and think about what’s best for the voters.  And do that."  Obama continued, "What separates us is probably a few hundred-billion dollars . . . .  The idea that we would put our economy at risk because we can’t bridge that gap doesn’t make a lot of sense."  The President said that he intends to reach out to congressional leaders to determine what is holding up an agreement.  Obama said, "So I remain, not only open to conversations, but I remain eager to get something done.  I'd like to get it done before Christmas.  There's been a lot of posturing up on Capitol Hill instead of just going ahead and getting stuff done."

  • House Speaker John Boehner held a brief press conference after the President’s.  Boehner said, "And I hope the president will get serious soon about providing and working with us on a balanced approach. . . .  Tomorrow, the House will pass legislation to make permanent tax relief for nearly every American, 99.8% of the American people. Then the president will have a decision to make. He can call on the Senate Democrats to pass that bill or he can be responsible for the largest tax increase in American history."
  • Earlier today, the White House threatened to veto House Speaker John Boehner’s fiscal cliff proposal that would raise taxes only on households making more than $1 million a year.  The statement said, "The deficit reduction is minimal, and perversely, given its authors, solely through tax increases with no spending cuts.  This approach does not meet the test of balance, and the president would veto the legislation in the unlikely event of its passage."  The statement added, "The American people have been clear that they will not accept an economic approach that places too big of a burden on the middle class, seniors, students and the most vulnerable Americans while asking too little of the wealthiest Americans."  A vote in the House is expected tomorrow on Boehner’s Plan B, which allows tax rates to rise to 39.6% for those making $1 million or more, while making the Bush-era tax rates permanent for everyone else.
  • A statement by Boehner’s spokesman said, "The White House’s opposition to a backup plan to ensure taxes don’t rise on American families is growing more bizarre and irrational by the day.  Republicans have always said a broader, ‘balanced’ plan is the ideal solution, and we have put one forward."  The statement continued, "In the absence of a ‘balanced’ solution from the president, however, we must act to stop taxes from rising across the board in 12 days.  If Democrats disapprove of this bill, then there is a simple solution: Amend it in the Senate and send it back to the House."
  • According to estimates prepared by the Joint Committee on Taxation, released today by the House Ways and Means Committee, Speaker Boehner's alternative would provide a total tax cut of $3.9 trillion over the next 10 years.

According to estimates prepared by the Joint Committee on Taxation, released today by the House Ways and Means Committee, Speaker Boehner’s alternative would provide a total tax cut of $3.9 trillion over the next 10 years. 

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