In his weekly address, U.S. President, Barack Obama, called on Republicans to “stop the games” and extend the payroll tax cut.
“Republicans in Congress should stop the games and extend the payroll tax cut for working Americans. Because if they don’t, nearly 160 million Americans will see their taxes go up at the end of this month.”
His comments come a day after Democratic and Republican lawmakers skirmished over plans to extend the tax cut seen as crucial to a fragile U.S. economic recovery.
“Congress can’t end the year by taking money out of the pockets of working Americans. Now is not the time for playing politics. Now is the time to do what’s right for the American people. No one should go home for the holidays until we get this done. So tell your Members of Congress, don’t be a Grinch.”
While independent economists say extending the tax cut would boost the economy at a critical time, both parties have been struggling to agree on a compromise deal in a re-run of this year’s budget battles.
Failure to extend the tax break would mean an effective tax hike for millions of voters in 2012, when Republicans and Democrats will face off in presidential and congressional elections.
Bottom line: Independent economists say extending the tax cut would boost the economy at a critical time.