Congresswoman Tammy Baldwin (D-WI) today blasted House Republicans for holding the middle class payroll tax cuts hostage for partisan gain. With middle class payroll tax cuts set to expire on December 31st, the Republican-led House passed a so-called extension bill filled with poison pills to appease the Tea Party and radical right. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid has already said the House bill will not pass the Senate and President Obama said he would veto it.
"Rather than do the right thing and simply extend the middle class payroll tax cut we all agree is necessary, the Republican leadership is using middle class families as pawns to score political points with the extreme right. It's games like this that make people angry," said Congresswoman Baldwin. "With Wisconsin families struggling to pay their bills, keep their homes, and send their kids to college, it's time for Congress to do the right thing," Baldwin said.
In Wisconsin, 3.2 million people currently receive a payroll tax cut of 2 percent averaging about $1000 for a typical working family. President Obama has proposed expanding that in 2012 to 3.1 percent which would provide a tax cut of approximately $1550 for the typical working family.
The Republican payroll tax extension bill actually increases taxes on working families by forcing large, end-of-the-year health care payments. It requires millions of seniors to pay more for Medicare.
The bill also cuts unemployment insurance benefits for one million Americans who lost their jobs through no fault of their own and imposes new limits on benefits for long-term unemployed individuals and their families.