Senate Begins Debate on $858B Tax Cut Bill

Deems House objections 'irrelevant'
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 10, 2010 6:39 AM CST
Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid Nev. meets reporters on Capitol Hill in Washington, Thursday, Dec. 2, 2010, following a Democratic Caucus lunch.   (AP Photo/Harry Hamburg)

(Newser) – The Senate voted to begin debate on a bill based on Barack Obama’s tax cut deal last night, with the final vote expected to be held Monday. The Senate’s version of the bill will add $858 billion to the deficit over 10 years, the Wall Street Journal reports. Though the bill largely follows the White House outline, lawmakers tacked on an extension of subsidies for ethanol and alternative energy sources to sweeten the deal for Democrats.

The previously-reticent Harry Reid is now behind the bill, and predicts it'll pass with nearly all Republicans and many Democrats supporting it. The House, on the other hand, is in open revolt; yesterday, in a closed-door session, Democrats were actually chanting “Just Say No,” as they voted against bringing the proposal to the floor. "If it's 'take it or leave it,' we'll leave it," one Democrat told the AP. But a Reid spokesman had this to say about the House: “This vote demonstrates they may be irrelevant to this process." (Read more Senate Democrats stories.)

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