John Boehner Opens The Door To Tax Hikes


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It appears that in order to halt the ever shortening walk off the fiscal cliff, John Boehner and Republicans may agree to raise taxes on the wealthiest Americans.  Boehner has offered to raise taxes on those earning greater than one million dollars to 39.6%, from the current 36%, which was the rate under President Clinton.  This is the Republican’s first concession on tax hikes and would throw the ball back on to the Democrat’s side of the court.  Until now, Boehner and Republicans have remained steadfast on the issue of tax increases but business executives have been urging Republicans to change their position.  There has not yet been a response to the Boehner offer with just over two weeks before mandatory $600 million dollar tax increases take effect, signifying the end of the Bush tax cuts.  According to Reuters, chief political strategist at Potomac Research Group, Greg Valliere said, “Boehner has now accepted the premise of higher rates. So now we’re just arguing over details. I think it’s a significant step.”  Boehner will unquestionably face opposition from many in his party who will not accept raising taxes on anyone.  But just as Boehner will face opposition, so will President Obama if he agrees to cut any social or entitlement programs.  “A major bloc of congressional Democrats has already signaled they will not accept major cutbacks in Medicare as part of any fiscal cliff deal.”  This includes raising the age of Medicare eligibility to sixty-seven as spelled out in recent days by Nancy Pelosi.  However, if a deal is to be reached, both sides will have to make concessions.  Republicans have now broken the stalemate.  The question now is will Democrats meet them at the dance.  House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, has said, “the House will meet through the Christmas season and beyond” in order to reach a deal.

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