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Mr. ROTHMAN of New Jersey. I thank the gentleman from New York for the time.
Mr. Speaker, this matter of whether to extend the payroll tax for middle class Americans for 160 million Americans is a no-brainer for most Americans. It has to be done. 160 million Americans should get a tax increase because the Republicans don't want to share the sacrifice of cutting spending and balancing our budget? We have to pay for the sins of the Republican majority who want to balance the American budget on the backs of working class Americans, seniors, veterans, and the middle class? That makes no sense. It's not right.
Now, my colleague from the other side of the aisle says that the Democrats want to take money from Social Security to pay for this. That's not true, Mr. Speaker. In my opinion, that is obviously not true. This is from the party, Mr. Speaker, that wanted to privatize Social Security. The Republicans wanted to privatize Social Security, and everyone knows it.
I'm not going to yield.
The Republicans just voted last year to end Medicare.
So the American people are not fooled about whose side the Republicans are on and whose side the Democrats are on, Mr. Speaker. The Democrats are for working people, for the American middle class, for seniors, for veterans, for labor. So the Republicans say, Mr. Speaker, that they want 160 million Americans to have their payroll taxes go up. They want 50 million senior citizens in America to be threatened with the loss of health care because they are going to deny the doctors who treat the seniors full reimbursement for their treatments. And they want to cut unemployment benefits that put food on the table for tens of millions of Americans who are out there looking for work because the Republicans do not want to share the sacrifice. They want to cut spending on the backs of the middle class working Americans and seniors.
They voted to privatize Social Security. They voted to end Medicare. Who is anybody kidding when they say that this bill to extend unemployment benefits, to keep the payroll tax cut for 160 million Americans, and to keep seniors having doctors care for them because the doctors will still get full Medicare reimbursement has anything to do with seniors? The Democrats are for Social Security, Medicare, and seniors, and everyone knows it.
It's time for our Republican colleagues--I'm a Democrat who voted against TARP and for the car company bailout--to get their priorities straight.
Vote for this continuation of unemployment benefits, for unemployment insurance, and full payment to doctors who take care of our Nation's seniors.
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