John Boehner Was For A Payroll Tax Cut Extension Before He Was Against It
Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell thought he had House Speaker John Boehner’s support for a two-month extension of the payroll tax cut, but Boehner turned tail on it and now opposes that deal.
Boehner’s decision over the weekend not to support the bipartisan two-month extension represents either a miscommunication with McConnell (who appeared to be under the impression that the House would pass whatever reasonable deal McConnell, [Jon] Kyl, et al would come up with) or a full reversal for the House speaker. As Roll Call notes, “Some Republicans said Boehner seemed to indicate on the conference call with members that he could support the deal, a claim his office denied.”
Republicans are clearly playing politics:
One big reason why many House Republicans oppose the two-month extension: It allows the White House and congressional Democrats to continue to push for the popular payroll tax cut after the New Year. Remember, they have been getting hammered on this back home, and look at the most recent NBC/WSJ poll about which party does a better job at protecting the middle class. Politically, for as much heat as the House GOP is taking on this walk away, perhaps they are right: They can’t afford, politically, to have this issue hanging over their head on Groundhog Day.