All you really need to know about the state of Washington, D.C. are three facts:
A–a majority of Republicans in the Senate defeated a bill to extend the payroll tax holiday that was introduced by their own Senate Minority Leader last week;
B–President Obama has decided that the only real legislative item he wants passed is that very payroll tax holiday–not deficit reduction, not extension of unemployment benefits, not ending the expansion of the Alternative Minimum Tax into the middle class, not preventing a 27 per cent overnight reduction in payments to Medicare providers;
C–Congressional Democrats and Republicans, as well as the White House, still have not approved the basic appropriations bills necessary tokeep the government operating.
To extend what should be extended will cost about $200 billion plus. The President doesn’t want to run the risk as a big taxer, so he is watching as Congress wrangles, something that has been thematic about this President–talk and watch.
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