Franken, Kline React To Payroll Tax Cut Extension Vote

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — The odds of your paycheck getting smaller next year just a got a lot greater. Tuesday in Washington, the House of Representatives rejected a bi-partisan Senate bill that would have extended the popular tax break for two months.

Conservative Republicans denounced the Senate deal saying they wanted a deal that would put in place a tax break for the whole year.

The impasse means 160 million Americans will see a tax increase, while about 2.2 million long-term unemployed Americans will see their benefits disappear.

Republicans insist a compromise is still possible, but Democrats say it’s too late.

Unless a last-minute deal can be reached, 160 million Americans will face a tax hike on Jan. 1 or an average of $20 less in their paycheck each week.

The votes from the Minnesota delegation were along party lines with Rep. Michele Bachmann not voting because she was campaigning for the presidency in Iowa. Republicans say they voted against the deal because they wanted a yearlong extension of the tax cut and not just one for two months.

Rep. John Kline criticized Senate Republicans for compromising with Democrats.

“They are in the Senate, you know, how frankly dysfunctional the Senate is,” Kline said.

But Democrats were quick to accuse the Tea Party of hijacking more moderate Republicans. And many criticized House Speaker John Boehner.

“Speaking about dysfunctional, he has lost control of his own body. He has lost control of his own membership, this was something Speaker Boehner signed off on,” Sen. Al Franken said.

The collapse of the compromise, which just a few days ago looked like a done deal, has some analysts saying Republicans will have some explaining to do. Prof. Larry Jacobs is with the Humphrey Institute.

“Congress has really done it this time. They are messing with the bread and butter of Americans who are already struggling, who are going to see their unemployment checks stopped, who are going to see their taxes go up and I think it’s going to rebound to hurt Republicans, who are really struggling,” Jacobs said.

And its not just the payroll tax cut that won’t happen. The extension of long-term unemployment benefits is a no-go and right now, a 27 percent reduction in Medicare payments to doctors will go into place in mid-January.

Republicans say there is still time for a compromise — Democrats are not that optimistic.

More from Esme Murphy
  • Notaxes

    Obama wanted a year long extension…..both parties wanted a year long extension. The house passed a year long extension. Why is everyone blaming the Republicans when the chicken you know what Democrats decided to only extend the payroll tax for 2 months. Are you kidding me ? This Congress, especially the Senate, can’t accomplish anything.

    • frozenrunner

      @Notaxes. Your name would give one a clue The extension was tied to prolonging unemployment benefits. The Republicans did not want to do that. That is why it was for only two month. Try a few more alternatives for news, learn to read better. In the current climate of no compromise. win at all costs politics, what do you expect would happen when you have a Democrat president with a Republican congress. Add the fact that any party in the Senate can fillibuster and legislation can get tied up.
      Why blame the Republicans. Who voted against the compromise plan. The Republicans..
      That is from a right of center organization, also saying the Republicans blocked it. So you can’t claim media bias. The righties will anyway

      • @frozenrunner

        “The extension was tied to prolonging unemployment benefits. The Republicans did not want to do that. That is why it was for only two month.” ???
        Simplfied that one a bit, didn’t ya? House proposed:•Extends expiring benefits for the long-term jobless through 2012, but at a maximum of 79 weeks coverage, less in some cases, which is well below this year’s 99-week limit. Revamps program to require beneficiaries without high school diplomas to seek an equivalent degree; lets states test applicants for illegal drug use.
        Senate approved:•Renews benefits for the long-term unemployed at current levels through Feb. 29, no other changes in program.

        • frozenrunner

          Simplified for the benefit of someone simple

          • frozenrunner

            There was a comment before mine earlier. Really The censor is out again

      • But Why O Why??

        Now why should Notaxer let any facts get in the way of his/her opinion?


    The GOP plan to pay for the payroll tax cut was to add another 3 year pay freeze to the Obama 2 year pat freeze for Federal workers. Of course the Federal employees working for Congress members would not be subject to the pay freeze. Congress members would be subject to the pay freeze..but unlike Federal government workers, nearly 1/2 of them are millionaires.

    47% of Congress Members Millionaires — a Status Shared by Only 1% of Americans

    It’s no secret that many members of the U.S. House and Senate are millionaires — 47 percent of them — their salaries paid in part by the American taxpayers.

    The Center for Responsive Politics has crunched the numbers and released the results on its Open Secrets blog:

    “About 47 percent of Congress, or 249 current members are millionaires. … In 2010, the estimated median net worth of a current U.S. senator stood at an average of $2.56 million,” according to the Center’s research.

    • eat it

      Yes, GOP wanted a five-year pay freeze for federal workers sure sounds like a Stallin 5-year plan to me

  • Sam I am

    This falls squarely on Harry Reid’s fault. No scratch of my back to may $20.00 a week more.

    Not to mention the original reduction was a temporary one – not permanent.

    • Brett

      CANCEL the PAYROLL TAX CUT, *AND* the extension of unemployment benefits, BOTH will help our country the MOST, in the LONG RUN. Let’s also revisit the premise that ALL Americans who are working should be paying at least SOMETHING IN FEDERAL INCOME TAXES. When did freedom become free.?? If you don’t think that you should be obligated to paying income taxes HERE, you are FREE to move to another country, where the standard of living, security, and overall well-being are better. I might even be willing to pay for your ticket OUT of the country.

      • barrister

        yep cancel unempolyment benefits that’ll really help people get a couple og minimum wage part time jobs instead of looking for a real job.

      • MCullenNE

        Well that cancel the Bush tax cutstoo Brett. See the recoiling Repub’s then!

      • Dude

        Federal income tax is a progressive tax. The idea being that people with little or no taxable income pay little or no tax. The main question is the level of progressivity.

        You also may recollect that people of all income levels pay other types of taxes, progressive such as state income tax and payroll tax, as well as regressive, such as sales tax, gas tax and the like.

        It’s not really that hard to understand. That is if you take the time to read up on it.

        • frozenrunner

          If you read up is a mighty big if for many. Hear something, remeber it just a little bid and twist it a little is more the norm

  • You do understand

    why it was done in the first place, right Sam?

    Though considering yer comment, you may not.

  • Kevin

    “Speaking about dysfunctional, he has lost control of his own body. He has lost control of his own membership, this was something Speaker Boehner signed off on,” Sen. Al Franken said.

    Is this fat POS still breathing?

  • Get in the game

    I prefer to go for it on 4th down rather than punt. Congress should too.

  • Brett

    Can somebody, ANYBODY, tell me when the 47% who pay NO FEDERAL INCOME TAXES will start to pay? Does ANYBODY have a PLAN on THAT??

    • Well Brett

      How much would you like them to pay?

      • me

        A buck o five. (Freedom isn’t free)

  • Franken, Kline React To Payroll Tax Cut Extension Vote « CBS Minnesota

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  • Remo Williams

    In case no one has noticed most of our “elected” politicians care little about you. While appearing to squabble over the $20 per week they will or will not let us keep they only have their best interests, jobs and the power it gives them in mind. They spend more of our tax money on themselves each week then what this pittance would amount to in a year for you or I. This will not become a tax increase but only return the taxes to pre-reduction levels. Letting us spend the extra $20 per week and extending the unemployment will not create any jobs it will only increase our national debt to China.

    • MCullenNE

      so true

  • Give me liberty

    Merry Christmas you filthy animals

  • Floater

    Two months of tax breaks for the working person is better than nothing. The house Republicans look out for millionaires but let the working person look out for themselves. Once again, Jesus weeps at the actions of the POG (Party of God).

    • Floater

      and also….Merry Christmas you filthy animals.

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