House Republican Leaders Agree To Payroll Tax Holiday Extension Without Offsets

Source: The Washington Post
House Republican leaders said Monday that they will support extending the federal payroll tax holiday through the end of the year without demanding spending cuts to pay for it, a concession aimed at averting another po­litically damaging showdown in Washington.

The House leadership could offer a pared-down measure to extend the tax cuts later this week. But the top three GOP leaders backed off previous demands that the tax break’s extension be accompanied by spending reductions to shore up the finances of the Social Security program, which is funded through withholding taxes.

Instead, House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) and his top lieutenants said they do not want to be held responsible for the tax increase on 160 million workers that would happen if the tax holiday were not extended.

The two sides have been negotiating for weeks but have been unable to strike a deal. Republicans want to continue negotiations over financing the rest of the original legislative package, including an extension of un­employment benefits and a key tweak to maintain Medicare reimbursement rates for doctors, while ensuring that taxes will not rise on workers.

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