House GOP on Payroll Tax Deal: No Way

Reports say that Boehner is behind it, but others are 'in full revolt'
By Kate Seamons,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 18, 2011 8:20 AM CST
House GOP on Payroll Tax Deal: No Way
House Majority Leader Eric Cantor, R-Va., center, joined by Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, right, and Rep. Jeb Hensarling, R-Texas.   (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

(Newser) – The Senate easily passed the payroll tax cut package yesterday, but "easy" probably isn't a word that will be linked to the deal's fate when it reaches the House tomorrow. Both the Washington Post and Politico report that many House Republicans aren't pleased with the two-month deal. How unhappy are they? Politico uses terms like "in full revolt" and "complained bitterly," while the Post calls the opposition that was voiced in a private conference call yesterday "vigorous." One person on the line apparently said that if the House is made to vote tomorrow, GOP leaders should ready themselves for, in the words of Politico, "a rebellion."

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What will actually happen tomorrow remains unclear. "Leaders said they held the call to get input from members," explains one GOP aide. "The speaker described three possible options—accept the Senate bill, go to conference, or amend the Senate bill and send it back." One person on the call said Boehner described the deal as a win and said members should "take it and live to fight another day." Many are apparently none too pleased with Boehner's attitude, and Eric Cantor, Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, and GOP Conference Chair Jeb Hensarling reportedly disagreed with him. "This is all a result of Boehner ceding the House majority to Senate Minority Leader McConnell," says another aide. Among the opposition's biggest complaints: that the 60-day deal doesn't bring enough "stability" to the middle class or to doctors and that it would give Obama ammunition for his State of the Union address, allowing him to "wag his finger" at Congress. (Read more payroll taxes stories.)

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