House Speaker John Boehner brings his "Plan B" to the House floor for a vote today, a high risk move since he spent Wednesday rallying members to get behind his proposal to only extend tax cuts on incomes below $1 million.
It’s largely a symbolic action (since House Democrats plan to unanimously vote against it, the Senate would squelch it, and Obama would veto it). And it’s potentially a disastrous strategy for Boehner (since at least 10 Republicans refuse to vote for the measure over their opposition to tax increases, The Washington Post reports). - Read more at The Washington Post
IRS: DONT FORGET ABOUT THE AMT The Internal Revenue Service warned lawmakers on Wednesday that 30 million additional taxpayers would have to pay the alternative minimum tax on their 2012 income if it isn't addressed in a fiscal cliff deal. “This situation would create two significant problems: lengthy delays of tax refunds and unexpectedly higher taxes for many taxpayers,” Commissioner Steven Miller said in a letter sent to congressional leaders. - Read the letter at The Wall Street Journal
PANETTA: FISCAL CLIFF THREATENS DEFENSE Defense Secretary Leon Panetta again lectured lawmakers about the impact of a somewhat arbitrary sequester, saying the consequences "will weaken this nation in the minds of our allies, our partners, and our potential adversaries and undermine the work and the sacrifices that our troops are making every single day."
"It is unacceptable to me that men and women who put their lives on the line every day in distant lands have to worry about whether those here in Washington can effectively support them," Panetta told reporters on Tuesday. Read more at The Fiscal Times
SECRET WHITE HOUSE SITDOWN WITH BUSINESS LOBBYISTS White House officials met with a handful of influential business leaders and lobbyists to reassure them that Boehner's "Plan B" proposal wouldn't hinder the possibility for both sides to cut a deal and avoid the fiscal cliff. The White House told the business leaders that "Plan B" had indeed set cliff talks back, but reassured them that negotiations would begin immediately after the vote and the two sides would once again try to come together on a deal. - Read more at The New York Times
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