Brushing past Democratic opposition, President Obama tonight announced agreement with Republicans to extend expiring tax cuts for all Americans, renew jobless benefits, and grant a one-year reduction in Social Security taxes for millions. The agreement also includes tax breaks for businesses that the president said would contribute to the economy's recovery. "Make no mistake, allowing taxes to go up on all Americans would have raised taxes by $3,000 for a typical American family and that could cost our economy well over a million jobs," Obama said.
Congressional Democrats had earlier in the day objected to the proposal as too generous to the wealthy. Obama said there were elements of the deal he personally opposed, including an extension of expiring income tax cuts at upper income levels and a more generous deal on estates. But he said he decided that an agreement with Republicans was more important than a stalemate that would have resulted in higher income taxes at all income levels on Jan. 1.