Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell says he'll oppose efforts by the White House to raise any more tax revenue moving forward, telling ABC News the "tax issue is finished."
The Kentucky Republican's stance on the issue differs from calls by many Democrats--and even some House Republicans--to look at a major reworking of the U.S. tax code, including the closing of some provisions and raising new revenue.
The New York Times reports McConnell is focusing intently on spending cuts, saying President Obama should take the lead on future fiscal plans.
The "fiscal cliff" deal approved by the U.S. House and Senate over the weekend was crafted by two men on mostly opposite ends of the political spectrum: Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell and Vice President Joe Biden.
According to a report in Politico, McConnell decided to work with the White House on the deal because Kentucky's senior Senator believed it would help the GOP gain future leverage in entitlement negotiations, and prevent President Obama from being able to castigate Republicans as the party that held tax cuts for the middle class hostage in behalf of the richest Americans.
Kentucky Senator Mitch McConnell is reportedly signaling that he and fellow GOP Senators are open to a strategy that would likely lead to the expiration of the Bush-era tax cuts for the nation’s highest earners. The website Politico is reporting McConnell talked about Senate Republican strategy late last week during a dinner in Washington with lobbyists.
Citing multiple sources in the room, Politico reporters say McConnell told those in attendance that Senate Republicans were looking to take a “two-bill strategy” to resolving the fiscal cliff crisis. Under such a plan, two different bills would be advanced in Congress, giving each party the chance to vote on the approach they favored, while knowing only one measure will actually be signed into law.
Poltico reports McConnell suggested he believed Senate Republicans could support a bill that renewed the Bush-era tax cuts for all but the top 2% of wage-earners, and increased taxes on capital gains and dividends from 15% to 20%. At the same time, the GOP-led House would pass a second bill that would extend the Bush tax cuts for all Americans. Such a move could possibly allow House Republicans to save face with supporters who are against raising any taxes.