Thursday, December 22, 2011

Tea Party calls it quits on payroll tax chicken game

John Boehner (R-Ohio) finally realized that he and his party had taken a really stupid position (even for them) regarding the payroll tax increase so he gave up the bluff at the last second and wants to cut a deal quick.   House GOP leaders yield on payroll tax
House Republican leaders, bowing to pressure from both the White House and their Senate colleagues, agreed to a stopgap measure that will forestall a tax increase on American workers that was scheduled to take effect Jan. 1. 
The deal is expected to come to a vote Friday under procedures that would require all members in both chambers to agree.
Given their penchant for high drama its not hard to see how the Tea-Party led House GOP let it come to this.  They love to make bold threats and make folks run to stock the cellar with food and batteries.  But getting this close to sticking every working American with higher payroll taxes in the name of fiscal responsibility with the news dropping just as the House hightailed it out of town for Christmas?  Pure genius of a strategy there, fellas. 

But now suppose hypothetically if the deal falls through tomorrow...
If any members object, Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) would call the House back into full session next week for a vote, he told reporters Thursday.
OK, I wonder how much it will cost the US taxpayers to fly or otherwise transport all 435 members of the House back to Washington for a special session over the Christmas holiday to handle business that would have already been handled if there was rational and competent leadership by both parties in Washington?  However many million dollars that might add up to, it pales in comparison to the political value it would provide the Obama reelection campaign and the DNC in general, keeping  in mind the most important background detail in this story.
The impasse largely concerned how to pay for extending the tax cut for a full year. The House had rejected the Democrats' idea to increase the income tax on millionaires...
Protecting millionaires at the expense of average working Americans.  For as long as I can remember, that was the precise summation that the Democratic Party made of the GOP economic strategy and I always scoffed at it.  But now it seems that Boehner and his Tea Party cronies who steer the GOP have proven the point. 

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