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McCain: Republican stance on payroll tax a mistake

Sen. John McCain (AP Photo/CBS News, Chris Usher)

WASHINGTON (AP) — Sen. John McCain said Thursday that Congress’ failure to reach agreement on legislation extending a payroll tax cut for working Americans “hurts the Republican Party.” The GOP’s 2008 presidential nominee said his party made a mistake in voting down the Senate-passed version of a bill that would have kept the current payroll tax relief intact for at least two more months.

McCain told CBS’s “The Early Show” he feels badly for 160 million Americans, whom he called “innocent bystanders caught in the crossfire.” He said the House should pass the same bill that cleared the Senate “but put a year on it” and send it back.

McCain also said, “This is really tragic for the American people, and I would say that next November, no incumbent is safe, nor should they be.”

Sen. Dick Durbin of Illinois, the No. 2 Democrat in the Senate, said the House must accept the Senate’s version of the legislation.

“That’s the only option,” he said in an interview on MSNBC. “Let’s get the 60-day matter out of the way, so there is no uncertainty, and then let’s sit down and talk about it.” Durbin maintained the congressional impasse has left company human relations directors and payroll administrators confused about how to proceed.

President Barack Obama prepared to make a fresh appeal later Thursday to House Republicans to accept the two-month payroll tax cut extension. The White House said that Obama planned to make a statement at midday.

Copyright 2018 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

One comment

  1. How dumb do they think we are?

    Tis’ the season for Liberals’ ignorance. They are claiming that the Republicans have lost the battle on the tax cut message. Wait a second…

    For the past ten years, Democrats were against tax cuts and in favor of keeping Social Security safely under Government control. Then, in an Orwellian renaming of the “Social Security Payroll Contribution” to their new name of “Payroll Tax Help for American families”, those same Democrats are playing a political flip-flop game to fool voters. And the media is helping.

    Just last month, Hoyer, Pelosi, Reid and Obama were insisting that no less than a one-year payroll tax cut extension would be acceptable, in front of the TV cameras. These are the same Democrats who screamed against implementing or extending the Bush tax cuts, claiming that tax cuts are a waste of the government’s money. These are the same Democrats who campaigned to protect the Social Security “Trust Fund” as a sacrosanct “lock box” while spending all the money on liberal pet projects. Now Democrats want to further decimate the Social Security system by spending more of people’s future retirement savings now.

    Meanwhile, Republicans want to make sure that any new tax cuts are “paid for” with other spending cuts, but the Democrats say “No”.

    But wait, the story has changed again! Suddenly, the Democrats are standing behind the President’s bully pulpit, saying that just a two month payroll tax cut is exactly what America needs… and the media is going along with it!!! How dumb do they think we are?

    It is painfully clear that none of these Democrats know anything about running a business and making payroll. Businesses must plan and budget for the future. Payroll departments and payroll service companies must calculate quarterly (three month) and yearly tax expenses. (Will every payroll department need to do a 2/3 extrapolation calculation on every employee to determine correct amounts to send to the IRS next quarter?) Workers and homeowners need to budget their own finances for the long term, at least a full year. All economic studies have PROVEN that short term tax breaks do NOT stimulate the economy; even the Democrats have championed those studies.

    What is this nonsense of a Democrat foisted two month deal, with the Democrats claiming that the Republicans are now causing a tax hike to harm Americans?!?

    Americans are smarter than that. We know who has really been naughty or nice.

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