Reid indicates Senate might not pass House tax extender bill

Source: By Ramsey Cox, The Hill • Posted: Friday, December 5, 2014

Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said Thursday night that the Senate might not be able to pass the House tax extenders bill before the end of the year.

Reid said it was “imperative” for the Senate to pass a government funding bill and a defense spending measure before adjourning for the year, but that senators would have to wait and see if a tax deal makes it to the floor.

“Everyone knows we have to do a spending bill. Everyone knows we have to do a defense bill,” Reid said on the Senate floor. “Everyone knows that we’re trying to do some tax extenders. We’re trying to do that but we’ll see.”Last month, President Obama killed a bipartisan tax deal Reid was working on with House leaders because he said it favored corporations over middle-class families.

The White House’s veto threat ended the talks of a longer-term deal, prompting the House to pass a retroactive one-year bill without much consultation with the Senate.

Republicans argued it was necessary otherwise there would be a tax hike for 2014 or headaches for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) if legislation was passed after the 2014 tax season started.

Some lawmakers have complained that the short-term bill could harm the economy because uncertainty for the 2015 tax season would loom until Congress takes long-term action.

Earlier this year, Senate Democrats tried to take up a bipartisan bill that extended nearly 40 tax breaks for two years, but Republicans filibustered that effort.