- The Washington Times - Friday, September 24, 2010

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said Friday she is committed to holding a vote this year on extending middle-class tax cuts, though declined to say whether she would do so before the Nov. 2 midterm elections.

“We will retain the right to proceed as we choose and would take it one day at a time,” said the California Democrat during her weekly Capitol press conference.

“But let me be very clear. … America’s middle class will have a tax cut. It will be done in this Congress. There is no question about that.”

Mrs. Pelosi’s comments came a day after a spokesman for Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said Senate Democrats would wait until the post-election “lame duck” session to bring up the tax cuts.

Reid spokesman Jim Manley blamed the delay on Republicans who have threatened to block a middle-class tax-cut vote unless Democrats agreed to extend tax cuts for wealthy Americans.

“Democrats believe we must permanently extend tax cuts for the middle class before they expire at the end of the year, and we will,” Mr. Manley said. “Unfortunately, to this point we have received no cooperation from Republicans to do so.”

Lawmakers are considering the renewal of tax cuts enacted in 2001 and 2003 under President George W. Bush set to expire at the end of the year. Democrats want to extend tax cuts only for individuals earning less than $200,000 or couples making less than $250,000. Republicans want to extend the breaks for taxpayers in all income brackets.

About 2 percent to 3 percent of Americans fit into the upper-income categories.

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