December 6th, 2010
07:07 PM ET

Obama announces proposed deal on taxes, jobless benefits

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2010/images/12/06/obama.jpg]

Ed Henry
CNN Senior White House Correspondent

President Barack Obama on Monday announced a deal with Republican leaders that would extend Bush-era tax cuts for two years and unemployment benefits for 13 months while also lowering the payroll tax by two percentage points for a year.

The compromise, worked out in negotiations involving the White House, the Treasury and congressional leaders from both parties, includes provisions that each side doesn't like, Obama said in a hastily arranged statement to reporters after discussing the proposed deal with Democratic leaders.

"It's not perfect," Obama said of the plan, which also would continue tax breaks for students and families contained in the 2009 stimulus bill and allow businesses to write off all investments they make next year. "We cannot play politics at a time when the American people are looking for us to solve problems."

As outlined by Obama and sources, the deal would add trillions of dollars to federal spending in coming years by extending the lower tax rates as well as the jobless benefits at a time when the president, Republican leaders and a federal deficit commission appointed by the president all say that the growing federal debt must be brought under control.

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Filed under: 360° Radar • Ed Henry • President Barack Obama • Raw Politics
soundoff (77 Responses)
  1. Oneeka semple

    I am so disappointed in President Obama. I was a supporter of him on till today.Republicans win again, I think I'll be voting for them come next election. Mr. President be the Leader you were put there to be for the America people that voted for you and needs to be there for them

    December 6, 2010 at 11:19 pm |
  2. Betty

    I have never really thought of myself as a liberal until tonight. If liberal means that you cannot understand how reasonable people would support tax cuts for the wealthy who have never paid their fair share of taxes, I'm proud to be called a liberal. If liberal also means you abhor the idea that Senate Republicans would use the welfare of the unemployed as a bargaining tool to achieve their tax cut goals for the wealthy, I guess I'm correctly described again......and all this time I just thought I was being a good Christian.

    December 6, 2010 at 11:13 pm |
  3. Mustafa

    They have to make a deal, because the both parties struggling for one goal. Now it is not the time that each party prove to the people that they are better than other one. In this century all the world watch us live and like to know America, American politicians, American people and America's current wars.
    we should think and figure out how we can use better our Human Resources to stay on top and bring a saver and better life for our people and at same time prove to the world that we deserve for being the best country in World.

    December 6, 2010 at 11:11 pm |
  4. Margaret Brown

    Are you kidding me? It is no wonder the rich keep getting richer (by 30% last year).

    Sorry Obama, I don't know what political game you are playing, but the "boy wonder" may become a one-term president!

    December 6, 2010 at 11:11 pm |
  5. James

    Has Obama learned anything from John Kerry's goose hunting trip in 2004? By reaching accross the isle and yielding his own (and 98% of America's) interests to the opposite ideology without a fight, Obama is betting his own (and his party's) future in the hands of his opponents.

    Fast forward to 2012...

    December 6, 2010 at 11:10 pm |
  6. Bob Schilke

    I don't understand what the Bush Tax breaks have to do with employing more people. I thought employee wages and benefits are business expenses. If rich people need these tax breaks to invest, why would they invest in the U.S. which is growing very slowly – not like China, India and Brazel. Of course, rich people can afford to hire professinal money managers.

    December 6, 2010 at 11:00 pm |
  7. Karen, MN

    Great show Anderson. Good night!

    December 6, 2010 at 10:57 pm |
  8. Karen, MN

    God forbid Josh unplugged from his every important life for 15 minutes.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:55 pm |
  9. Larry

    Extending unemployment to those who are not actively seeking employment because they refuse to work for $10.00 to $15.00 an hour when they are receiving $400.00 a week is not helping our situation. Cut the benefits to those who are taking advantage of the system and see how fast they return to work and start paying taxes again. Unemployment insurance was not designed to keep people from working. It is to assist you while you look for work after loosing your job.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:52 pm |
  10. Debbi

    I, too, am extremely disappointed in the decision to extend the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans. It's my understanding that if the cuts for the wealthiest 1-2% are allowed to continue even for 10 years, this will add approximately $700 billion to our deficit! That's money we should be saving and applying to our debt! But the Republicans think these cuts should be made permanent!! Can you imagine what that would do to our deficit?

    I'm hoping that President Obama is actually smart like a fox, and has figured out a way to expose the Republicans' bumbling economic policy ideas. The reason Republicans always give for extending the cuts is that so doing will increase jobs in the private sector...evidently they feel that the rich will spend their money investing in small businesses. Well, now the ball is in their court...let's see if the Republicans have predicted accurately! If not,vote Democratic and end the tax cuts for the wealthiest in 2012!

    December 6, 2010 at 10:51 pm |
  11. Amy Smith

    You see, President Obama is not like the rest. You may call it caving. But, has anyone thought at all. What would take place in this nation in another couple of weeks. When people on unemployment, would realize they have no money and no job. Think about that for a minute.. Yeah...

    December 6, 2010 at 10:48 pm |
  12. Hendry

    This is a sad moment for America.. Let's give Bill Gates and Donald Trump a tax cut!! What sense does this make!!!! my god!! I make you a promise AC360, that is that I will never ever be a republican... This party is a disgrace and will eventually fall, hopefully our country hangs by a thread in the next following years...

    December 6, 2010 at 10:47 pm |
  13. Karen, MN

    What a sad life this young man is living.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:46 pm |
  14. Amy Smith

    All women in America, should be voting in 2012, for President Obama. And I mean all of us. Equal Pay! Ladies, Equal Pay! Don't for get that Ladies!

    December 6, 2010 at 10:43 pm |
  15. Pam Robair

    Who's fault is it that the middle class has not money? How quickly we forget! Lets put out money where our mouth is and stop leaving it to other people to make things happen because your scared!

    December 6, 2010 at 10:43 pm |
  16. Pam Robair

    I am so sick and tired of people saying they are disapointed in Obama. There is not one person, republican or democrat has taken the responsibility that this man has taken on. He is the only one trying to make things happen and get things done, so this country can recover and for some reason it's never good enough! I guess we all need someone to take the blame for us.Makes us feel better. I'm so proud of my president and I'm sorry for the phony supporters! I know he didn't want to go back on his promise and it just go's to show what he is willing to sacrifice to help our people.Do what you have to do presiodent Obama, history will prove you right!

    December 6, 2010 at 10:39 pm |
  17. Amy Smith

    Thank You! Susan. Someone that understands the position the nation put him in. Thank You, so much

    December 6, 2010 at 10:39 pm |
  18. Cody

    This agreement will not help 90% of the American People.It was just reported that Corporate America,small businesses included, recorded the best quarter in profits ever in "HISTORY"!!! Where are the jobs Corporate America and John Boehner??? The only thing that this agreement will move are the bank accounts of the rich, and Corporate America, and the Stock Options of the Corporate Execs who lie and cheat their way everyday through Wall Street. What ever happened to accountabilty???? One word to solve our economic woes......"Reregulation"...and lets start with the Oil Companies!!!!

    December 6, 2010 at 10:38 pm |
  19. Rojelio

    The President keeps cutting deals for short term gains. I live in a city that looks like a war zone because of the economy. People have left in waves because of General Motors closing plants. This country needs to start producing our own products instead of buying the majority of goods from foreign countries. I was a strong supporter of President Obama until tonight. My support was definately weekend today.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:37 pm |
  20. Amy Smith

    Hey America! Democrats are for the People. Republicans are for BIG Business (The Rich) Come on you know them, you work for them.

    Explain to me, if you get up, for work every day, of the week for some of us. How do you vote Republican? Maybe I have it all wrong? Maybe if I vote Rich, I may get rich? Please decide. Wow!

    December 6, 2010 at 10:36 pm |
  21. Mary

    Republicans and their cronies will continue to laugh all the way to the bank while the elderly, low income, middle income citizens will still live in pain and insecurity.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:34 pm |
  22. Anthony

    I agree with the president 100% how long would the republicans hold the unemployed ransom? I think the president made the best deal for the man in the street collecting unemployment due to the lack of jobs at the moment. The unemployed deserve to have some sense of dignity and hope for the xmas and new year. The president is elected to protect the people, playing political poker while people become homeless would have been terrible. Obama made the right decision.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:33 pm |
  23. Rena, Wa.

    I am angry that Obama is allowing the Republicans to use black mail to extend the tax cut for the wealthy at the expence of the middle class. Obama would get the support of the people if he he would stand up and keep the promises he made to the American people. We can see the Republicans don't want him to suceed. And he has played right into their hands by betraying the people who voted for him!

    December 6, 2010 at 10:33 pm |
  24. Karen, MN

    I missed SNL. That was funny!

    December 6, 2010 at 10:29 pm |
  25. Ron Hand

    When are you (Anderson) going to analyze the reality that the average American does not have any $$. The mortgage meltdown eliminated all disposal income (LOCs). Our economy was(is) based on consumer spending, well guess what even with a low unemployment rate the middle class has no money.

    My point. The extension of the tax credits for the average income family will not stimulate the economy because these citizens were living off of there equity in there homes.

    End the Bush tax cuts for everyone!! And let the real economy shows its face@!!

    December 6, 2010 at 10:29 pm |
  26. Al

    He caved in, when he should have stuck to his position. He should have let all tax cuts expire and blame it on the republicans as well as the end of unemployment benefits. Blame them too for that. That's what they would have done. He has thin skin and is leading the democrats to huge losses in two years. He just lost my vote and I've never voted non democratic in my 32 year voting experience. The republicans led him down into this trap and he took the bait. They're very smart and he is too chicken to take them on. Sad day for the USA. Watch, he'll compromise as they take apart healthcare reform. stay tuned.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:28 pm |
  27. george lyons

    This is the right move. 2 years for the republicans let's see the job's give me that old trickle down bull . when the 2 yrs are up let's see what the repub's have to say. Isay kick all the repub's out. mil and bil will hoard all their money and the job's still won't be there

    December 6, 2010 at 10:28 pm |
  28. Jim

    I'm a "99er" and have been unemployed for two years now. There is no mention of an extension for the four million who cant find work and have no income coming in. We are just getting tossed out in the garbage and left to rot.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:27 pm |
  29. John

    I don't understand why the media wouldn't mention the fact the this unemployment benefit extension is a big fat failure. Without a Tier 5 every week 100,000 Americans lose their benefits added to the current 4 million who have already lose their benefits. When the president said the without this deal 7 million Americans lose heir benefit by the end of 2011 he really means only 4 million will lose their benefits.

    The DNC must now find a someone to run against Obama.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:25 pm |
  30. mike

    good job

    December 6, 2010 at 10:24 pm |
  31. Larry

    Extending unemployment benefits for those who have been on the train wagon is just wrong. To many unemployed are offered jobs but not willing to work for $10.00 to $12.00 an hour when they are collecting $400.00 a week doing nothing. I could see it if the unemployed were actively looking for work and cannot find it. I see too many people laughing each time they extend their unemployment benefits while sipping on a cold beer watching football on the TV

    December 6, 2010 at 10:23 pm |
  32. Amy Smith

    How can you say, you will not vote for Obama in 2012. Are you kidding me? People better vote for Obama in 2012.

    The Republicans, just showed us what they were fighting for.. And it was defintely not for you or me... ok Be smart when you vote in 2012. Unless, your very rich then your excused.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:22 pm |
  33. David

    Please clear up the confusion about who will get the unemployment extensions. Are the 99rs included in this extension. My last check is this Wednesday and nobody seems to be able to explicitly say that those who just hit the 99 week mark are going to be included in this extension of if there will be a Tier 5.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:22 pm |
  34. Mike

    The Banks have money and don't lend it.

    The wealthy have tax breaks and don't spend that savings. They Bank it.

    They don't hire.

    The people on Social Security have no cost of living; the payroll tax which

    funds that increase is eliminated for a year.

    They can't spend.

    The jobless can't spend.

    Let's see how much those busineses make now.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
  35. Paige

    i don't understand how this show can be keeping people honest! Most the people on that panel couldn't be honest. How about you find someone actually struggling in this economy to be on a panel to talk about how this is hurting them. How much longer does the poor 99% of america have to cry out before someone listens? HELP HELP HELP is anyone listening?

    December 6, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
  36. Angela

    I agree with Susan: (first response) "I think The President made a wise, unselfish decision, that given this weak ecomony, will benefit most Americans, in some way, now. I like what he said about being able to convince the majority of Americans in 2 years that these tax cuts cannot be continued and are temporary. I commend him for being willing to give a "deal" to all Americans at this time. This is a change in the status quo and the way fights are won in Washington. Remember the American Promise he stated when giving his inaugural speach. "Hold firmly, without wavering, to hope that we confess." Trust in the wisdom of our President, God, and our great country."

    December 6, 2010 at 10:21 pm |
  37. Katrina

    This deal is a joke. I voted for President Obama and as of today I believe is weak and does not have the backbone to stand up and fight for what he says he believes in. I can deal with disagreements on principle but if you are really principled as he said he was wouldn't he have lived up to one of his key campaign promises? If he will not fight for the majority of the American people then why should we fight for him? Typical Washington.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:19 pm |
  38. John Stoner

    'Read my lips, no new tax cuts for the rich' I think Mr. Obama has just sealed his fate with progressives like myself.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:18 pm |
  39. Maxine

    If you have ever had a loved die of cancer – you know that this news means that she is really at the end. She is probably already gone – on so much pain medicine that she does not recognize anyone. I don't know her personally but it breaks my heart.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:18 pm |
  40. Jim

    If the upper tax bracket taxpayers are so improtant to the economy, re: creating new jobs with their continued massive tax break, what have they been doing for the past 3 years with the monies they saved due to these same tax breaks?

    December 6, 2010 at 10:17 pm |
  41. Karen, MN

    I’m so sad to hear that Elizabeth Edward has turned for the worse. My sister has survived terminal breast cancer for 10 years and a dread the day my sister will no longer receive treatment. My heart goes out to her children and family.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:15 pm |
  42. Maxine

    Today, my heart is with Elizabeth Edwards and her family. Regardless of what happened in her marriage – I am sure this is a difficult time for her husband.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:15 pm |
  43. ron

    tough call, I am disappointed. I would of paid my middle class taxes knowing the upper class was paying their share. America would be better off if everyone helped pay down the debt.
    The rebulicans would have to live with the fact that they forced 95% of voters with higher taxes.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:15 pm |
  44. Johnny

    People are hating on the President for cutting a deal to keep the tax cuts. The hate should be on the people that are clearly working extraordinarily hard to try and ensure his failure, no matter how it effects the people of the United States. Once again more money for the rich and famous and more nothing for the average 95% of the population.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:13 pm |
  45. Karen, MN

    I wish Obama would have stuck to his guns and not extended the tax cut to the rich.

    December 6, 2010 at 10:02 pm |
  46. Carl

    I am so disappointed in President Obama. So the Republicans win again, So more of the same, is better for America middle class? Come on Mr. President, be the Leader America needs!

    December 6, 2010 at 9:40 pm |
  47. Annie Kate

    The deal sounds pretty good to me – gets the unemployed their benefits back; lowers payroll taxes for those working by 2%; extends the Bush tax cuts. Even though it costs more than the stimulus package, if we could bail out the financial institutions we should be able to extend the same "courtesy" to our citizens. I am disappointed in the democratic response to this deal; are they now going to be the party of no like the GOP usually is? I certainly hope not.

    December 6, 2010 at 9:33 pm |
  48. Susan Lewis

    I agree with the President and his position. I think he made a wise, unselfish decision, that given this weak ecomony, will benefit the most Americans, in some way, now. I think he has balls to be willing to hold true to his values and beliefs of bipartisanship even tho knowing he will be criticized by both sides for doing so. I like what he said about being able to convince the majority of Americans in 2 years that these tax cuts cannot be continued and are temporary. I commend him for being willing to give a "deal" to all Americans at this time. This is a change in the status quo and the way fights are won in Washington. I respect him for holding ture to his campaign promise of "a change that we can believe in." See him out; the game is not over until the last out of the 9th inning. Remember the American Promise he stated when giving his inaugural speach. "Hold firmly, without wavering, to hope that we confess." Trust in the wisdom of our President, God, and our great country.

    December 6, 2010 at 8:52 pm |
  49. barry

    he can sell it all he wants but he lost my vote for 2012. I will work to elect a progressive..even if he is the choice of the party he will not be getting my vote....

    December 6, 2010 at 8:22 pm |
  50. Dana

    So...is this a 5th Tier? Are those who have received 99 weeks benefits eligible to receive more?

    December 6, 2010 at 7:41 pm |
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