Tax Cut Showdown: Dems' Two Options

Must win centrists as Bush cuts expire
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Dec 1, 2010 11:47 AM CST
Senate Majority Leader Sen. Harry Reid of Nev. gestures during a news conference on Capitol in Washington, Tuesday, Nov. 30, 2010.   (AP Photo/Manuel Balce Ceneta)

(Newser) – When it comes to tax cuts, the Democrats’ options are few. Politically speaking, it’s too late to force the expiration of Bush cuts on those earning more than $250,000. But Dems have two notable choices, writes David Leonhardt in the New York Times: one, to let the Bush cuts expire for those earning more than a million dollars—a “millionaire’s tax”; or two, to extend all the cuts, but link them to other measures to help the economy.

Those might include tax cuts for companies that hired new workers and extending unemployment benefits. For Democrats to prevent a filibuster, they must devise a plan that can win over centrist Dems and at least two Republicans. The millionaire plan “would probably do more long-term good than any of the other remaining options,” and it would let Dems call themselves “friends of the middle class.” But it would be a political gamble.

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