Thursday, December 22, 2011

House Republicans Agree To Payroll Deal - By Major Garrett

House Republicans on Thursday crumpled under the weight of White House and public pressure and have agreed to pass a two-month extension of the payroll-tax cut, Republican and Democratic sources told National Journal.

The House made the move after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., agreed to appoint conferees to a committee to resolve differences between the Senate's two-month, 2 percentage point, payroll-tax cut and the House's one-year alternative.

The House will pass the two-month extension with a technical correction to the language designed to minimize difficulties businesses might experience implementing the short-term, two-month tax cut extension.

Negotiators "found a path forward for a 2-month deal that provides a brief extension, that fixes the payroll problems in the Senate-passed bill, and that provides the ability to work toward a longer-term solution," said another House GOP aide with direct knowledge of the negotiations. The deal would remove some reporting requirements that Republicans argued added to the administrative burden caused by a short-term extension

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