"House Passes Senate’s Fiscal Cliff Bill"
After threatening to amend the Senate’s fiscal cliff bill to include spending reductions, the House passed the measure Tuesday evening by a vote of 257-167, with 85 Republican votes. 151 Republicans, including House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-VA) and Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), and 16 Democrats voted against the bill. The “American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012” now goes to President Obama for his signature.
During debate, Rep. Dave Camp (R-MI) urged Republicans to support the bill, arguing that it “settles the level of revenue Washington should bring in.” The GOP has indicated that it would not support revenue increases in the upcoming battles to raise the debt ceiling, turn off the sequester cuts, and keep the government running through a continuing budget resolution. Instead, conservative lawmakers in both the House and the Senate have said that they will take advantage of these critical debates to extract deep cuts to Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid.
“I just don’t want the gentleman’s statement that this settles permanently how much revenue will be made available,” Rep. Sandy Levin (D-MI) said in response to Camp. “The President has made clear there has to be a balanced approach and no one should be misled into thinking otherwise. No one.”
As the House began voting on the measure, Grover Norquist gave his blessing, tweeting that since the vote took place in the new year — after the Bush tax cuts have technically expired — “Every R voting for Senate bill is cutting taxes and keeping his/her pledge.”