|After the UK Brexit referendum of 23 June the implications on the political, economic and legal relations between the UK and the EU have been discussed from many angles. But what about...|
Update on "Fiscal Cliff" Negotiations
At this point, Congressional staff are reporting that a compromise – if it does happen -- will likely include the following: (1) a process or trigger for fundamental tax reform and fundamental entitlement reform, (2) a short term debt limit increase, (3) some modifications to the tax code (extending some tax incentives and removing others), (4) tax rate increases for incomes above $250,000 or $500,000 and (5) discretionary spending cuts to bring both sides together.
This week Senate Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) renewed his call for House passage of a Senate-passed extension (S 3412) of expiring tax cuts for families earning less than $250,000 a year. He noted that passage of the bill has drawn the support of some Republicans, among them Rep. Tom Cole of Oklahoma, a former chairman of the National Republican Congressional Committee. Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), on the other hand, said he believes that capping tax breaks for upper-income families, rather than raising rates, would produce sufficient revenue for dealing with the deficit and clinching a deal on the fiscal cliff. House Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) has also pushed for raising additional revenue through the reducing of tax loopholes instead of raising tax rates on taxpayers with incomes over $250,000.
The President has been holding a series of events this week to build support for his approach to avoid across-the-board tax increases and steep spending cuts in defense and domestic programs and to pressure Republicans to allow tax increases on the wealthy while extending tax cuts for families earning $250,000 or less. The White House has stated that the President will not sign legislation that extends current tax rates to the top 2 percent of income earners, or those households with incomes over $250,000.
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