This is what’s happening regarding the payroll tax/unemployment insurance bills.
1. First Republican House leadership wanted to have a two month bill that would extend the payroll tax cut and unemployment benefits.
2. Republican House members rejected this.
3. Meanwhile, the Senate passed a two-month extension by 89-10, an overwhelming bi-partisan majority for a bill endorsed by Senate Minority Leader McConnell.
4. The Senate left for the holidays and will return January 2nd.
5. Normally, with a situation this serious and a bill passed across parties by the Senate, House members would vote to pass the Senate bill. INstead, the House did not take a vote on the bill itself, but used a procedural rule to have a joint Senate-House Committee reconcile the differences. In this way, Republicans would be protected from the burden of having voted against the payroll cut and UE extensions.
So these are the choice:
1. The House passes the Senate bill that gives a 2 month extension
2. President Obama calls the Senate back to vote on a house fill for a full year extension. The Houses passes it, too
3. A House/Senate Committee works out the differences. But since the House never voted on an actual bill, how that would happen is unclear.
4. No bill is passed and unemployment insurance runs out for millions and millions more will see a significant increase in payroll taxes.
Don’t these people realize that taking money out of peoples’ pockets now is a clear and present danger to the economy?