What riled House Republicans wasn't the taxes on the rich in the Senate's 'fiscal cliff' bill, it was the absence of significant spending cuts. But changes at this late date could have scuttled the bill. So they yielded to pressure
Washington, Jan. 1 (DP.net).─ At 11 p.m., this first day of the year after the "fiscal cliff" deadline had expired, the House voted with bipartisan support to pass the Senate's "fiscal cliff" bill, 257 to 167. The vote represented a bipartisan agreement with 172 Democrats and 85 Republicans supporting the measure. Among prominent Republicans voting in favor were House Speaker John Boehner (R, Ohio) and former VP candidate Rep Paul Ryan (R, Wis).
Congress broke a rancorous stalemate Tuesday to pass legislation designed to avert the so-called fiscal cliff. But the compromise bill, which blocked most impending tax increases and postponed spending cuts largely by raising taxes on upper-income Americans, left a host of issues unresolved and guaranteed continued budget clashes between the parties.
The bill represented the largest tax increase in the past two decades and was passed over opposition from conservative Republicans in the House who objected to the fact that it contained no long-term spending cuts of any significance.
A few minutes afther the bill was approved in the Houwe, Pres. Obama and VP Joe Biden appeared in the White House press briefing room. "Thanks to the votes of Democrats and Republicans in Congress I will sign a law that raises taxes on the wealthiest 2% of Americans while preventing a middle-class tax hike that could have sent the economy back into recession and obviously had a severe impact on families all across America." Mr. Obama said.