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Not So Fast: Boehner Opposes Senate’s 2-Month Payroll Tax Plan

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By Doug Powers  •  December 18, 2011 11:33 AM

**Written by Doug Powers

Yesterday the Senate passed a temporary plan that would extend unemployment and the payroll tax cut for two months, and give President Obama 60 days to decide about the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline.

It was thought that the House would follow the Senate and pass the bill early next week, but after John Boehner’s interview this morning, not so fast:

House Speaker John Boehner said Sunday that he opposes the Senate plan to extend the payroll tax cut for two months.

Boehner, R-Ohio, told the NBC program “Meet the Press” that Congress should continue negotiations to come up with a compromise by the end of the year that would extend the lower payroll tax rate for a full year, as sought by President Barack Obama.

“I believe that two months is just kicking the can down the road,” Boehner said in explaining Republican opposition in the House. “I’m tired of it. … It’s time to just stop, do our work, resolve our differences and just extend it for one year.
[...]
However, it requires approval by the House, and Boehner’s comments reinforced initial rejection of the plan by House Republicans, especially conservatives who don’t like the payroll tax extension in any form. The House will take up the measure Monday.

Boehner apparently reversed himself since a conference call with caucus members Saturday when he was the only House Republican leader to express support for the Senate plan, according to a GOP source. Boehner was not asked about the caucus meeting in the NBC interview.

Check back tomorrow as we follow the bill’s progress, or lack thereof, in the House.

We’ll know right away if it does pass the House, because emanating from inside the Beltway and echoing across fruited plain will be the four of the most famous words in modern American politics: “Lobbyists, start your engines!”

**Written by Doug Powers

Twitter @ThePowersThatBe

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