Statement from the House Floor on Extending Middle Class Tax Cuts

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... we need to reject this and continue with the white house and come up with a compromise. i yield back. the speaker pro tempore: the gentleman from michigan. mr. levin: it's now my privilege to yield one minute to our very distinguished majority leader, mr. hoyer of maryland. the speaker pro tempore: the majority leader is recognized. mr. hoyer: i thank the gentleman for yielding. i rise in support of this legislation. first let me say that there were two messages that came from this election in my opinion. maybe others as well, but certainly these two. one, we need to grow jobs. we need to have more jobs for our people. we need to grow our economy. the second was, we are very concerned about the deficit. . i agree with both of those conclusions in this election. i think we need to do both of those. in the short term in order to grow the economy we have to invest in the economy and we need not take money out of the pockets of, as a result of the tax bills that were adopted in 2001 and 2003 because we wanted not to have the scoring for a longer period of time and the deficit displayed exploding they were made to sunset. that is to say tax cuts were put in place and then they were dunsls setted. it so happens that they dunsls set at the end of this month. that would -- that they sunset at the end of this month. and if we didn't vote for that to go into effect taxes would increase on everything. what this bill does is says, no, we want to cap. we want to make sure that no american has any tax increase for the first $250,000 of their income. no american. 100% of american taxpayers would be exempt under this bill from any increase in their taxes on january 1 of this year. one of the other messages that the american public said to us, when you can reach common ground, when you can reach agreement, why don't you guys take it? why don't you move forward where you can agree and then spend time on that which you cannot agree upon but at least do that on which you can reach common ground? now, i haven't heard all of the debate. i've been in other meetings, but my suspicion is almost everybody, if not everybody on the floor wants to make sure that the first $250,000 of income of any american is not subjected to a tax increase on january 1. that's my conclusion. now, somebody will come up and say, no, you're wrong on that, but if so i stand to be corrected. but we have reached common ground, i believe, on that proposition. that's what this bill carries forward. now, we have disagreements. as i said, the second message was, they're very concerned about the deficit. i'm very concerned about the deficit which i think, as i was quoted in the paper yesterday or the other day as saying, it's the most critical challenge that confronts this country that impacts on every other challenge we have in this country including our ability to bring taxes down and create tax reform. now, we don't have agreement on other elements of the republican tax program of 2001 and 2003 which will sunset pursuant to that policy on december 31. and the issue, therefore, before this house right now is whether we're going to hold hostage the first $250,000 of income of every american or we're going to say, no, we have agreement, we'll resolve that and then we will contend on the other issues. whether we argue about necessity to cut taxes on those over $ 50,000, on impacting small business, on growth of the economy, all of that's a legitimate argument. but i really do not believe we have disagreement on what this bill intends to do. it's just that some people think it doesn't do enough. i understand that. but very frankly, my friends in the house and in the other body, we have been holding ...