Onward to Greatness on Tax Cuts

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September 14, 2010 2:23 p.m.

So where are we on tax cuts? And an Obama Plan round of tax cuts on incomes under $250k a year?

Democrats in both Houses seem to be moving toward holding a Obama Plan tax cut vote in advance of the November elections. Harry Reid says he expects a vote before they adjourn, which means in the next three weeks. Meanwhile, the leadership in the House seems to be moving in the same direction. Chris Van Hollen, the Dems House campaign chief, basically made the argument today in a chat with Greg Sargent, that such a vote would crystallize the last six weeks of the campaign. It also seems that Nancy Pelosi is getting convinced of the logic of this approach. So she’s going to meet with her caucus in a meeting that should have started just moments ago to take the temperature of her people and try to sell them on the case for pressing for a vote. “Tonight is a temperature-taking. We’d like to see a vote,” a senior aide told TPM.

And then in the background, there’s this new idea of sort of reshuffling the deck and creating an entirely new tax bracket at either $750,000 of taxable income or perhaps $100,000,000 of taxable income per year. But just how this fits into the math and what they’d be voting on isn’t entirely clear. And, honestly, I’m not convinced even the people making the decisions are entirely clear. When I first got wind of it, my take was that House leaders were thinking it was an easier vote if the middle class threshold got pushed higher into the financial stratosphere. But I’m not completely clear if that’s the case. In general, the idea seems to be the basic approach of pushing through an extension for sub-$250k income isn’t quite sexy enough. Doesn’t quite pop. And the new bracket will give it some extra spark.

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