Obama To Call For Extension Of Bush-era Tax Cuts
President Obama is expected to issue a statement today calling for a one-year extension of Bush-era tax cuts. The extension would continue cuts for families making less than 250-thousand dollars a year. Without some sort of action by Congress those cuts are due to expire on the first of January. Republicans have voiced opposition to any extension that only applies to those earning less than a quarter million dollars.
Obama’s proposal is unlikely to sway his opponents in Congress, who have argued consistently that the Bush tax cuts should be extended for everyone, including higher earners.
The Democratic incumbent will make his proposal during a 11:50 a.m. statement at the White House.
Whether it gains traction or not, Obama’s move achieves several political goals. It shifts the campaign conversation – at least for a day – from last week’s meager jobs report and his handling of the economy to “tax fairness” and inequality in America.
It burnishes Obama’s message of being the candidate who backs the middle class while Republicans and their presumptive presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, favor the wealthy.
It also sets a baseline for what is likely to be a months-long debate about deficit reduction.
The tax cuts enacted by Republican President George W. Bush, Obama’s predecessor, will expire on January 1 without congressional action, part of a so-called fiscal cliff that could hit the U.S. economy alongside deep automatic spending cuts. Romney has suggested Congress wait to act on the issue until January, when he hopes to take office.