President Barack Obama has given House Republicans an opening:
While protecting the tax rates for 98 percent of Americans at year’s end, allow the rates for top-earners to rise to pre-Bush levels and then return in the next session of Congress to examine the bigger picture of tax reform, eliminating exemptions and possibly lowering the high-end rates then. He said so in an interview with Bloomberg Television yesterday.
House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp says his fellow Republicans are still looking for a “comprehensive” agreement to avert the automatic tax increase and spending cuts set to take effect Jan. 1.
“I think we’re all still looking for a comprehensive solution here that includes all of the factors that are in place,” the Michigan Republican said on his way into a party conference meeting today, “and there’s many, and so I think at this point its still how do we get to a comprehensive solution.”
Does the standoff on tax rates for the top 2 percent of income-earners bode an unbreakable stalemate?
“No I don’t think so at this point yet,” Camp said. “Obviously you have to think about all the options potentially. I think people are thinking about it, but I think we want to see if we can get a comprehensive answer at this point.”