WASHINGTON — The US Senate approved a Democratic plan Wednesday to extend expiring tax breaks for all but the wealthiest Americans, though the measure will not resolve the country’s looming fiscal impasse.
Republicans want the Bush-era tax cuts extended for all, arguing that Congress should not raise taxes on anyone when the economy is as sluggish as it is now, but their measure to do just that failed and the chamber passed the Democratic bill instead.
By a narrow 51-48 vote, lawmakers voted to extend the tax cuts for all American families making less than $250,000 per year. The bill would mean those making more than that figure would pay higher taxes in 2013.
The vote was a Washington political showdown of the first order, with Vice President Joe Biden appearing in the Senate in the event he was needed to break a tie, after two in the Democratic caucus — Joe Lieberman and Jim Webb — said they would vote no on the measure and two others were undecided.
The bill “respects the will of the American people,” Majority Leader Harry Reid said on the Senate floor shortly before the vote.
“We can spend the next five months debating” whether the wealthiest Americans should also receive a tax break, he added.
The bill, however, is likely to fail in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives, ensuring that the debate over taxes carries on deeper into campaign season ahead of November’s general elections.
“We all know this is not about the economy. We know this is about the election,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell said.
“This proposal guarantees that taxes will go up on roughly a million of our most successful small businesses,” he said, reflecting the Republican argument that the tax hikes would harm some of the country’s top job creators at a time of persistently high unemployment.
Trump Twitter-rages at ‘evil propaganda machine’ New York Times
President Donald Trump kicked off his Sunday morning by going on a multi-tweet rant about the New York Times where he blamed them for his poor poll numbers and called them "an evil propaganda machine.'
Trump began with, "The Failing New York Times, in one of the most devastating portrayals of bad journalism in history, got caught by a leaker that they are shifting from their Phony Russian Collusion Narrative (the Mueller Report & his testimony were a total disaster), to a Racism Witch Hunt....., " before adding, "'Journalism' has reached a new low in the history of our Country. It is nothing more than an evil propaganda machine for the Democrat Party. The reporting is so false, biased and evil that it has now become a very sick joke...But the public is aware! #CROOKEDJOURNALISM."
Trump suggests hitting France with 100 percent tariff on wine over dispute with Macron
According to a report from Bloomberg, President Donald Trump publicly suggested that he would consider a 100 percent tariff on wines coming from France.
The report states that the president recently made the suggestion as part of his trade war that has crippled American manufacturers and farmers while at the same time hitting American consumers' wallets.
Trump's comments came during a recent Long Island fundraiser and were tied to his unhappiness with President Emmanuel Macron and his tax on multinational technology companies.
Gun found in FedEx package sent from US to China
Chinese authorities have found at least one firearm in a FedEx package sent from the US, local police said Sunday, in the latest incident to befall the logistics firm in China.
Police in Fuzhou, eastern Fujian province, said "in recent days" they had received a tip about a package sent to a Fujian-based sporting goods company.
The parcel was sent by a US client and contained at least one firearm, said Jin'an district police through their official Twitter-like Weibo account.
The firearm has been seized and officers are investigating, they added, without specifying the number of weapons in the package.