News / USA

US Political Parties Draw Battle Line on Tax Cuts

Multimedia

As lawmakers return to Capitol Hill from the August recess, a major showdown is shaping up between the President and Republican leaders on the issue of tax cuts - specifically, who should get them.  President Barack Obama favors extending Bush era tax cuts only for middle income Americans while Republicans are adamant that everyone should receive them, including the wealthiest Americans.  With crucial mid-term elections approaching, both sides are drawing battle lines in the sand. 

President Obama chose an unusual setting Monday to discuss the economy - the backyard of a middle class home in Northern Virginia.  But his message was the same:  

Republican leaders are blocking tax cuts for the majority of Americans, unless the nation's top earners get the same break.

"We're still in this wrestling match with John Boehner and Mitch McConnell about the last two or three percent," said President Obama.

Tax cuts passed under the previous administration are set to expire at the end of this year.  

The president wants to extend those tax cuts to families earning less than $250,000 a year but not for those earning more.

Republicans appeared ready to concede after House minority leader John Boehner said this on CBS News:

"If the only option I have is to vote for those at 250,000 and below, of course I'm going to do that," said John Boehner.

Boehner quickly found himself alone.  Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell accused Democrats of driving a wedge between low and high income Americans.

"Now they want to drive another nail in the coffin - a massive tax hike on the very people who will dig us out of this recession by expanding their businesses and creating jobs," said Mitch McConnell.

But Democrats say the Republican proposal would add another $700 billion to the deficit over the next 10 years - something Democratic Senator Richard Durbin says the country cannot afford.

"He wants the millionaires to receive a $100,000 tax cut, a tax cut most have not asked for and many do not need," said Richard Durbin.

The president has urged lawmakers to approve tax cuts for middle-income Americans as soon as possible.  

But to do that, he has to convince members of his own party, especially conservative Democrats like Congressman Gerry Connelly.

"Given the fragility of the economy, all of the Bush tax cuts should be extended temporarily," said Gerry Connelly.

The issue could prove to be a major test of the president's leadership.  Recent polls show voter disatisfaction over high unemployment and the slow pace of recovery could give the Republicans the votes they need to strip Democrats of their congressional majority in November.

You May Like

Karzai's Legacy: Missed Opportunities?

Afghanistan's president leaves behind a much different nation than the one he inherited, yet his legacy from 13 years in power is getting mixed reviews More

Video Secret Service Chief Under Fire for White House Security Breach

Julia Pierson faces tough questions from lawmakers after recent intrusion at White House, says: 'It is clear that our security plan was not executed properly' More

Frustrated, Liberian Students Want Ebola Fight Role

Thousands have volunteered to go to counties, rural villages to talk to people in their language about deadly virus More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihadi
X
Mahi Ramakrishnan
September 30, 2014 2:16 PM
Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Malaysia Struggles to Stop People Joining Jihad

Malaysian authorities say militant groups like the so-called "Islamic State" have used social media to entice at least three dozen Malaysian Muslims to fight in what they call "jihad" in Syria and Iraq. As Mahi Ramkrishnan reports from Kuala Lumpur, counterterrorism police are deeply worried about what could happen when these militants return home.
Video

Video Could US Have Done More to Stop Rise of Islamic State?

President Obama says airstrikes against Islamic State militants in Syria will likely continue for some time because, in his words, "there is a cancer that has grown for too long." So what if President Obama had acted sooner in Syria to arm more-moderate opponents of both the Islamic State and the Syrian government? VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports from the United Nations.
Video

Video Treasure Hunters Seek 'Hidden Treasure' in Central Kenya

Could a cave in a small village in central Kenya be the site of buried treasure? A rumor of riches, left behind by colonialists, has some residents dreaming of wealth, while others see it as a dangerous hoax. VOA's Gabe Joselow has the story.
Video

Video Iran's Rouhani Skeptical on Syria Strikes

Iranian President Hassan Rouhani expressed skepticism Friday that U.S.-led airstrikes in Iraq and Syria could crush Islamic State militants. From New York, VOA’s Margaret Besheer reports the president was also hopeful that questions about Iran’s nuclear program could be resolved soon.
Video

Video US House Speaker: Congress Should Debate Authorization Against IS

As wave after wave of U.S. airstrikes target Islamic State militants, the speaker of the Republican-controlled House of Representatives says he would be willing to call Congress back into session to debate a formal, broad authorization for the use of military force. VOA’s Michael Bowman reports from Washington, where legislators left town 10 days ago for a seven-week recess.
Video

Video Ebola Patients Find No Treatment at Sierra Leone Holding Center

At a holding facility in Makeni, central Sierra Leone, dozens of sick people sit on the floor in an empty university building. They wait in filthy conditions. It's a 16-hour drive by ambulance to Kailahun Ebola treatment center. Adam Bailes was there and reports on what he says are some of the worst situations he has seen since the beginning of this Ebola outbreak. And he says it appears case numbers may already be far worse than authorities acknowledge.
Video

Video Identifying Bodies Found in Texas Border Region

Thousands of immigrants have died after crossing the border from Mexico into remote areas of the southwestern United States in recent years. Local officials in south Texas alone have found hundreds of unidentified bodies and buried them in mass graves in local cemeteries. Now an anthropologist and her students at Baylor University have been exhuming bodies and looking for clues to identify them. VOA’s Greg Flakus has more from Waco, Texas.
Video

Video Ebola Robs Liberians of Chance to Say Good-Bye to Loved Ones

In Liberia, where Ebola has killed more than 1,500 people, authorities have worked hard to convince people to allow specialized burial teams to take away dead bodies. But these safety measures, while necessary, make it hard for people to say good bye to their loved ones. VOA's Anne Look reports on the tragedy from Liberia.
Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.Colonel Steve ‘Spiros’ Pisanos left Greece and came to the U.S. to learn to fly. He flew fighters for the Allies in World War II, narrowly escaping death multiple times.

AppleAndroid