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Neon Tommy - Annenberg digital news

House Dems Reject Obama Tax Plan And Reid Punts On DREAM Act

Neon Tommy |
December 9, 2010 | 10:22 a.m. PST

Capitol Hill. (Photo by Jessika Walsten)
Capitol Hill. (Photo by Jessika Walsten)
The House of Representatives Democratic Caucus voted behind closed doors against President Obama's tax compromise with Republicans Thursday afternoon.

Democrats voted in a closed conference for a resolution that would prevent the tax deal from going to the floor of the House for debate.

The vote comes on the heels of President Obama's controversial deal with the G.O.P. to extend the Bush-era tax cuts, which are due to expire Dec. 31, to all Americans for two years.

"If it's take it or leave it, we'll leave it," said Rep. Lloyd Doggett, D-Texas.

While it's not known what will happen next, the passage of the resolution will at least stall Obama's tax package.

Some representatives suggested that the vote was more cathartic and symbolic than substantive.  Seen by many as a vehicle to express anger and frustration over the president's compromise plan to extend tax breaks to America's wealthiest for two more years, the matter is still likely to be brought to the House floor by the Democratic leadership.

It's expected that if it comes up for a full vote it will pass wth solid Republican support and enough Democrats to win a majority. If not, it would be a catastrophic political defeat for the White House. The same measure is likely to come before the Senate later Thursday where it is likely to be approved.

Meanwhile, Senate Majority Leader Harry Red (D-NV) has announced that he is postponing senate action on the immigration reform DREAM Act. He had hoped to push the measure through sometime Thursday but, due to Republican intransigence, came up short of the 60 votes he needed. Most political observers believe this is the end of any hope for the DREAM Act passing this session of congress, with even less hope during the incoming year.


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