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Congress Should Continue the Payroll Tax Cut

Conservatives in Congress are standing firm against keeping and extending the temporary payroll tax cut passed last year.

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Conservatives in Congress are standing firm against keeping and extending the temporary payroll tax cut passed last year. That means come January 1, taxes will go up for the middle class and poor, taking money out of workers’ paychecks and dragging down the already weak economy. Conservatives’ rather blasé attitude toward this possibility contrasts sharply with their fanatic concern that taxes for the rich must never, ever go up in any circumstances.

The public is unlikely to be pleased by conservatives’ lack of interest in their economic welfare. A just-released United Technologies/National Journal poll finds that 58 percent of the public thinks Congress should act now to extend the payroll tax cut, compared to just 32 percent who think Congress should not.

But the public does believe taxes should be raised on the rich. The lastest example of this sentiment comes from a CNN/ORC poll on the super committee’s plans for reducing the deficit. The survey found by 2-to-1 (67-32) that the public approved of increases in taxes on “businesses and higher-income Americans” to help bring down the deficit.

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