Fiscal Cliff Deal Passes; U.S. House Approves Bill On New Year\’s Day and Sends to Obama

by Categorized: President Obama, Richard Blumenthal Date:

It\’s finally done.

The U.S. House of Representatives, after a very long day on New Year\’s Day, voted 257 to 167 for the fiscal cliff deal that had been previously approved by 89 to 8 in the U.S. Senate.

Sen. Dick Blumenthal of Connecticut issued a statement after the deal had passed in that chamber with bipartisan support.

“I’m frustrated and unhappy that we couldn’t reach a better solution much sooner, but this deal is better than no deal at all,\’\’ Blumenthal said. \”Avoiding the fiscal cliff protects the nation’s middle class – including 1.4 million families in Connecticut – from steep severely damaging tax hikes, and preserves unemployment insurance for 43,000 laid-off workers in Connecticut. These points and others are vital to continued economic growth and job creation – in short, saving the economy from slipping back into recession. Also important, it avoids for now, slashing arbitrary spending cuts that would particularly damage defense spending, endangering our national security, and Connecticut’s defense industry jobs.\’\’

“We do need to address our national debt with smart spending cuts and revenue increases by closing loopholes and special breaks, and reducing health care costs – a balanced approach in a larger agreement early in the new year. We cannot balance the budget on the backs of our seniors and most vulnerable. We need to make a New Year’s resolution to change the way business gets done in Washington.”

Later in the U.S. House, longtime member Charlie Rangel went to the floor at about 11:45 p.m. Tuesday to complain that the House would not be approving the emergency money for relief from Hurricane Sandy.

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3 thoughts on “Fiscal Cliff Deal Passes; U.S. House Approves Bill On New Year\’s Day and Sends to Obama

  1. Da Troof

    Whew, that was fun.

    Now there’s the little problem of $16T in debt, $1T annual deficits, tens of Trillions in present value of unfunded entitlement liabilities, and Obamacare to contend with.

    Maybe the media will begin covering just how massive and difficult these challenges are once their hero Obama got reelected and the Republicans have been summarily blamed for the fiscal cliff. One can hope.

  2. Kim

    the can has been kicked down the road once again – the debt ceiling has been reached and Obama wants carte blanche to continue his profligate spending. It’s time to get serious about cutting spending – no more can-kicking, no more finger-pointing, no more Obama criss-crossing the country campaigning. He’s in charge – the buck stops with him.

    Media be honest about the spending problem? Yeah, one can hope

  3. Kim

    I inadvertently posted this in the wrong place. This is an attempt to rectify that error.

    It’s a testimony to how little Washington expects of itself – and how little it seems to feel it owes the electorate – that the nation’s capital erupted in self-congratulation upon announcing New Year’s Day that the fiscal cliff had been (at least partially) avoided.

    Let’s pull back a moment from all the breathless drama of the past few weeks and consider this development in a broader context. What did federal lawmakers actually accomplish? They managed, at the 11th hour, to avert a trap they set for themselves nearly 18 months ago, when the deal to raise the debt ceiling set up the contours for the fiscal cliff.

    And what are the fruits of this stitch in time? The nation will endure its first major income tax increase in two decades, at a time when the economy is still in the doldrums. Taxes on capital gains and dividends go up, decreasing the incentives for investment. The estate tax will also increase, meaning that Washington will confiscate a larger share of some families’ legacies upon the death of their patriarchs or matriarchs.

    What’s more notable, however, is what this agreement doesn’t do. It does not address the twin causes of our current economic malaise: excessive spending and insufficient economic growth.

    This deal implicitly accepts President Obama’s premise that extracting more money from the wealthy is sufficient to meet our current challenges. And with Mr. Obama hinting that even more tax increases may be just around the corner, our hopes for an impending economic renaissance are at risk.

    The above is excerpt form an Editorial in the Orange County Register:
    http://www.ocregister.com/opinion/tax-382330-deal-economic.html

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