McConnell Blasts Dems' Tax Plan: "Only in Washington could someone propose a tax hike as an antidote to a recession"

ABC News' Matthew Jaffe reports:

The top Senate Republican Mitch McConnell took to the Senate floor today to blast President Obama’s plan to extend the Bush tax cuts only for individuals making under $200,000 and couples making under $250,000.

“Democrats spent the last two years putting government in charge of health care, the financial sector, car companies, insurance companies, student loans — you name it. Now they want the tax hike to pay for it all,” McConnell said. “Americans asked the administration to fix the sink, and they remodeled the house instead. And now they’re sending us the bill.”

McConnell said he was introducing legislation to ensure “that no one in this country will pay higher income taxes next year than they are right now.”

The Kentucky senator then cited “the good news” that “a growing chorus of Democrats” – including Sen. Joe Lieberman – is opposing the administration’s proposal.

“I couldn’t agree more,” he said. “Only in Washington could someone propose a tax hike as an antidote to a recession. And this is no small tax hike.”

“Let’s face it,” concluded McConnell, “the Democrat agenda has been disastrous for the economy: two and a half million jobs lost: two and a half trillion dollars more in debt, more job-stifling regulations, mandates, and red tape. And now they want to drive another nail in the coffin — a massive tax hike on the very people who will dig us out of this recession by expanding their businesses and creating jobs.”

After McConnell's remarks, fellow Republican Jon Kyl of Arizona - noting that "it's clear that we're not out of America's worst financial crisis since World War II" - asked, "Why on earth would anybody be talking about raising taxes on anyone?"

McConnell and Kyl were firing the latest salvos in the escalating debate over what to do about the expiring Bush tax cuts. You can read more on the back-and-forth about taxes in our earlier post here.

- Matthew Jaffe

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