Congress 'exhausted' so everyone compromises and goes home for Christmas
This is how important legislation is made in Congress these days.
A deal was reached on funding the government through September of next year that will avoid a shut down that was due to start tonight.
So what was the catalyst that got the deal through? Washington Post:
With the holiday season upon them, some aides suggested that lawmakers' exhaustion and eagerness to leave the embattled Capitol for several weeks served as key factors in reaching the deals. Next year's session will begin in late January.
The poor babies were tired so they inked a deal they could have had weeks ago.
The leadership is now working out a compromise on the payroll tax holiday that is so near and dear to Obama's heart. It would encompass two months rather than the full year because congress can't figure out how to pay for it. Democrats - and Obama - have abanonded the idea of raising taxes on the rich to fund it. But they can't agree on how to offset the cost:
The legislation will provide the full funding for the rest of fiscal 2012 for most of the government, including the Pentagon, the Education Department and the Environmental Protection Agency.
Now that the spending deal has been clinched - votes are expected in both chambers Friday - the payroll tax issue remains the last fight for the acrimonious first session of the 112th Congress, one that has been marked by repeated brinkmanship.
After several days of trading blame on both issues, there was a broad shift in tone Thursday morning in negotiations on the tax plan. Senate Majority Leader Harry M. Reid (D-Nev.) predicted the impasse would be resolved soon. And House Speaker John A. Boehner (R-Ohio) told everyone to "step back and take a deep breath."
"I think there's an easy way to untangle all of this," Boehner said. "We just need to let the members do their jobs, and we need to let the two institutions do their work."
Talks on the payroll tax holiday lasted deep into Thursday night. They had picked up steam 24 hours earlier, when Democrats dropped their demand that the cut be paid for with a new surtax on those who earn more than $1 million a year.
Lefties heads are going to be exploding again because Obama caved in to the GOP's demands on taxes. But it wasn't just the GOP. Those Democrats in the senate running for re-election are terrified of voting for any kind of tax increase - even one on the rich. Obama and Harry Reid finally realized the measure would never get through the senate and dropped it.
This has to be the most disconnected statement by a congressman this year:
"In spite of many unnecessary obstacles, it is good to see that responsible leadership and good governance can triumph," House Appropriations Chairman Harold Rogers (R-Ky.) said Thursday night, referring to the spending plan.
Um...no. What "triumphed" was laziness and stupidity - as it usually does in Congress.