House Republicans Reverse Course, Agree To Temporary Tax Cut Extension

WASHINGTON, D.C. – House Republicans had a change of heart and will agree to a two-month extension of a Social Security payroll tax cut, which will keep 160 million Americans from having smaller paychecks in the new year.

Earlier this week, the Senate passed a bi-partisan bill to temporarily preserve the tax cut, continue extended unemployment benefits for almost two million people and keep doctors from taking a big cut in Medicare payments. House Republicans initially balked at the two-month stopgap measure, hoping to pressure the Senate into agreeing to a year-long agreement.

Democrats and Republicans have disagreed on how to pay for the tax cut, with the GOP favoring spending cuts in other areas while Democrats support a tax surcharge on millionaires. The battle will resume after New Years, since the current agreement only delays the tax hike until the beginning of March.

“It is about time the House Republicans joined Democrats to prevent a massive tax hike on middle-class Americans, including almost 5 million people in New Jersey, where the typical family would have seen their taxes rise by $1,300 next year,” said U.S. Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ). “ But make no mistake: Things should never have reached this point. It’s a shame the House Republicans were willing to once again put our entire economy at risk to try to score political points. It was also very clear during this process that Tea Party Republicans did not want to provide tax relief to everyday working families in America, but jump at the chance to cut taxes for the rich.”

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