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Speculation mounts.

The House Democrats passed a bill extending the universal tax cuts, and only the universal tax cuts!  20 Democrats voted with the Republicans in an effort to kill the tax cuts.  The record is established for the 2012 elections.

So the matter is up in the Senate now.  The Democrats are expected to float two bills, one extending the cuts which apply to everyone including those who earn under $250,000 and a second one pushed by Chuck Schumer as extending the cuts which would apply to everyone earning under $1,000,000.  Bear in mind, these cuts are universal.  Even the multi-billionaires will receive them.  The Republicans are expected to filibuster, not to ensure that those earning over 1 mil a year will get their share of tax cuts.  They are going to filibuster to ensure that they get tax cuts which apply to nobody else.

I hope the Democrats are clear on this message, but many of them wanted to cave before reaching this point.

Addendum: Of course, it doesn’t help when the President himself soft-pedals what has been accomplished.

The President continues to believe that extending middle class tax cuts is the most important thing we can do for our economy right now and he applauds the House for passing a permanent extension.  But, because Republicans have made it clear that they won’t pass a middle class extension without also extending tax cuts for the wealthy, the President has asked Director Lew and Secretary Geithner to work with Congress to find a way forward.  Those discussions started just yesterday and are continuing this afternoon.  The talks are ongoing and productive, but any reports that we are near a deal in the tax cuts negotiations are inaccurate and premature.

It’s official.  I now regret not having voted for Hillary Clinton in the primary.

MoveOn’s there too. This is really a moment being wasted.  I hope other Democrats step up to the plate, maybe someone willing to run in the primary in 2012.

Second addendum: Well, maybe something’s in the works.  DKos is reporting that the equivalent of the House bill will come up on Saturday – and only that bill.

Okay, they’re doing the right thing.  But they really need to press the point that the Republicans are willing to hold universal tax cuts hostage in order to guarantee the continuance of tax cuts exclusive to the rich which will push the debt up another trillion.

I’ll reserve judgment until I see how the Democrats play this out.

This would certainly be a good time to put pressure on moderate Republicans, particularly the two women up in Maine, and Scott Brown.  Any relatives in either state?

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