Obama to push extension of some tax cuts
President Barack Obama pushes tax cut extension for families earning less than $250,000
WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama, eager to shift election-year attention away from the nation's lackluster jobs market, called on Congress Monday to extend tax cuts for families earning less than $250,000 a year while allowing taxes to rise for households making more.
Sen. Jim Inhofe, R-Tulsa, said, “This is nothing more than President Obama trying to pivot back towards his campaign rhetoric that is aimed at creating class warfare in this nation. Raising taxes on job creators is the wrong thing to do especially when our economy has stalled with the unemployment rate remaining above 8 percent for 41 straight months.”
Rep. Tom Cole, R-Moore, said “a call for tax hikes is the last thing the job market needs ... . Instead of trying to create political conflict, President Obama should work with Congress to extend tax relief for all Americans.”
“Let's not hold the vast majority of Americans and our economy hostage while we debate the merits of another tax cut for the wealthy,” said Obama, flanked by a dozen people the White House said would benefit from the tax cut extension advocated by the president.
Obama wants Congress to pass a one-year extension of the Bush-era tax cuts for households making less than $250,000 before they expire at the end of the year. He said the outcome of his November election contest with Republican rival Mitt Romney would then determine the fate of the tax cuts for higher income earners.
“My opponent will fight to keep them in place. I will fight to end them,” he said.
White House spokesman Jay Carney said Obama “would not sign” a bill that extended the whole range of tax cuts in full.
Out of 118.7 million U.S. households in 2010, about 2.5 million had incomes of $250,000 or more. The median household income was $49,445.
Obama has long supported ending the tax cuts for those making more than $250,000. But the White House and the president's re-election team are reviving his arguments now as a way to paint congressional Republicans as obstructionists and Romney as a protector of the wealthy.
Romney supports extending the tax cuts for all income earners.
Extending the tax cuts only for households making below $250,000 costs the government about $800 billion less over 10 years than extending them for everyone. The full cuts cost the government about $4.5 trillion over a decade.
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