(WASHINGTON) — The House of Representatives voted Thursday to pass a $46 billion small business tax cut that Republicans hope will lead to economic growth by enabling entrepreneurs to deduct 20 percent of their income. Democrats condemn the cut as another giveaway for the richest American taxpayers.
By a mostly ideological vote of 235-173, the House approved the cut, which was a top priority for Majority Leader Eric Cantor and Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp. Just 18 Democrats crossed the aisle to vote with the GOP majority, although 10 Republicans voted against it.
House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said the cut takes “the opposite approach of the stimulus” by empowering employers to make decisions on how more of their hard-earned money is spent. The bill faces a tough road ahead, with overwhelming opposition in the Democrat-controlled Senate. Still, Boehner called on President Obama and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to get behind the legislation, instead of “pushing for higher taxes to fuel more government spending.”
“This week, Democratic leaders in the Senate demonstrated their desire to continue the spending binge that’s hurting our economy by punting on a budget for the third straight year,” Boehner stated. “With millions of Americans still asking, ‘Where are the jobs?,’ I hope the president and Senate Democrats will relent and work with Republicans to find common ground so we can help the private sector put people back to work.”
Most House Democrats voted against the measure, decrying the measure for providing further breaks to the wealthy and adding to the deficit.
“You have to give [Republicans] credit. They are consistent, and they stick with the guy that [brought] them to the dance, and that’s the wealthiest people in America,” House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., told reporters at a news conference following the vote. “Fifty-six percent of this tax giveaway goes to the top three percent earners in our country. It gives an average of $58,800 — $58,800 to the 125,000 millionaires, and they don’t have to create one job. They can create them overseas.”
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Ahiza Garcia, CNN
Jennifer Graham, Deseret News