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Boehner: House Will Reject Deal On Tax Cut, Benefits; Senate Should Stay On Job

Saying again that it's wrong to enact two-month extensions of payroll tax cuts and jobless benefits for the long-term unemployed, House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) just told reporters that he expects the House will this evening reject the deal to do just that, which passed the Senate by an overwhelmingly bipartisan majority on Saturday.

Boehner, as he did on Sunday, pushed for a one-year extension of those provisions. Anything less creates too much uncertainty, he said. And Boehner called on members of the Democratic-controlled Senate to come back from their vacation to negotiate a compromise.

"It's time for us to do our work," Boehner said.

It's very uncertain that the Senate would return, however. As The Associated Press notes, "it would take approval from all 100 senators to let the Senate hold any votes before the chamber's late January return."

"If Congress doesn't act," the wire service adds, "some 160 million Americans would see their take-home checks cut by 2 percentage points beginning Jan. 1, when this year's 4.2 percent payroll tax reverts to 6.2 percent."

If the long-term unemployment insurance benefits aren't extended, NPR's Tamara Keith reported earlier on Morning Edition, an estimated 1.8 million people would lose those benefits in January alone.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Mark Memmott
Mark Memmott is NPR's supervising senior editor for Standards & Practices. In that role, he's a resource for NPR's journalists – helping them raise the right questions as they do their work and uphold the organization's standards.