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Fri February 17, 2012
House Passes Payroll Tax Extension
The Republican-controlled House voted 293-132 today to renew a payroll tax cut that benefits 160 million workers, as well as extending benefits to millions of unemployed Americans.
The Senate is expected to quickly approve the legislation, which then goes to President Obama for his signature.
Workers would continue to receive the two percentage-point cut in the 6.2 percent Social Security payroll tax — as much as $2,200 for high-income earners.
The Associated Press reports:
Passage of the legislation also hands Obama a political win over objections from many Republicans who oppose it but were eager to wipe the issue from the election-year agenda. Opposition was particularly strong in the Senate, where Republicans signaled they would allow the measure to pass with a simple majority — instead of the filibuster-proof 60 votes typically required. That was a signal they want the measure to pass but don't want to vote for it and the $89 billion it would add to the nation's $15 trillion-plus debt.
The legislation, which would add $100 billion to the U.S. deficit and is aimed at further stimulating the economy ... next goes to the Democratic-led Senate, where it is expected to pass later in the day.