Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Tough Pill To Swallow

Yesterday, President Obama announced a tentative deal with congressional Republicans to extend the Bush-era tax cuts for all Americans for two years in exchange for a 13-month extension in unemployment benefits and other tax benefits for American workers. Given the fact that Republicans had indicated that they will not compromise on their desire to extend the costly tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, the President decided to get a deal done now to avoid an economic hit to the middle class during this holiday season. "I'm not willing to let working families across this country become collateral damage for political warfare here in Washington," Obama said in a statement. "Sympathetic as I am to those who prefer a fight over compromise, as much as the political wisdom may dictate fighting over solving problems, it would be the wrong thing to do." Despite Republican wrangling over the past two years about deficit spending and debt, the New York Times reports that the entire package "would cost about $900 billion over the next two years, to be financed entirely by adding to the national debt." However, "[o]n balance," CAP President and CEO John Podesta said in a statement, "I think the President was right to choose helping working Americans over a December conflagration. But the question hanging over Washington and the country today is how will he avoid repeating the same scenario being played out again and again for the next two years? That's a question that's keeping me awake at night."
 
from THE PROGRESSIVE REPORT

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