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Posted at 2:58 PM ET, 12/15/2010

Top House liberal concedes Obama tax deal likely to pass House

By Greg Sargent

In another sign that Obama's tax cut deal seems likely to pass into law over liberal opposition, a top House progressive who opposes the compromise conceded in an interview that it's likely to pass the House pretty much as is, and predicted it could get the support of scores of Democrats.

Raul Grijalva, one of the deal's most outspoken opponents, told me just after the Senate overwhelmingly passed the tax deal this afternoon that he personally was not conceding defeat. He said his opposition hadn't diminished one bit and vowed to continue "opposing it all the way down the line."

But Grijalva allowed that the deal was likely to pass the House anyway, because the House Dem leadership was essentially structuring the process to ensure its passage -- and that White House lobbying of individual members was paying off.

"The appetite for rejecting the White House deal isn't as intense as it should be," Grijalva told me, adding that passage is "where it's headed."

"It's a combination of factors," Grijalva continued. "The White House has been very active in its lobbying. And there's the specter of denying the middle class and unemployed their benefits from this deal if you vote it down."

Grijalva confirmed that the dynamic in the House is one I reported on here the other day: House Dems angry about the deal may end up voting for it once they've voted on amendments allowing them to register their opposition to the stuff they don't like.

"The leaders are saying, `We're trying to structure the debate to let the opposition have an opportunity to be heard," Grijalva said. "If they let the caucus state their opposition to the provisions that are the most painful to us, that for some members would mitigate it."

Asked to estimate how many House Dems might support the tax deal in the end, Grijalva said: "Eighty or 90 or 100."

Grijalva cautioned, however, that the Dem leadership's strategy could still "backfire." He said that if Dem leaders introduce amendments on hated provisions -- such as the one on the estate tax -- they would have a chance of passing, which would kick the bill back to the Senate. But any amendments substantially changing the bill are likely to be opposed by almost all Republicans and some Blue Dog Dems, making their passage unlikely.

Speaking of the entire bill, Grijalva concluded: "It's being set up to pass."

By Greg Sargent  | December 15, 2010; 2:58 PM ET
Categories:  House Dems, Senate Dems, taxes  
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"But any amendments substantially changing the bill are likely to be opposed by almost all Republicans and some Blue Dog Dems, making their passage unlikely."

And that's all you need to know about the Tax Capitulation bill. The bill will pass, Obama will declare victory, and then the budget slashing frenzy will ensue. And all you Dems cheering this suicidal monstrosity on will complain long, loud and uselessly as one piece of the government after another is dismantled in the name of deficit reductions. Great job, Brownie.

Posted by: wbgonne | December 15, 2010 3:19 PM | Report abuse

"...the specter of denying the middle class and unemployed their benefits..."


Posted by: shrink2 | December 15, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

shrink, I think he means middle class unemployed

Posted by: Greg Sargent | December 15, 2010 3:24 PM | Report abuse

It's called talkin' loud and sayin' nothin'. House Dems need to stop whining and produce something besides talking points for/from the netroots. First Pres. Obama didn't hold their hands tight enough and walk them through HCR passage, eventhough it passed mainly on his ballsy push to get it over the finish line (with admitted props to Pelosi). Then he didn't just come out and delcare DADT dead via fiat. Now this, when they did nothing to pass the tax cuts for the middle-class before the mid-terms. They're useless at all things except getting re-elected in their failsafe districts!!

Posted by: MrInternational | December 15, 2010 3:27 PM | Report abuse

Grijalva was one of the congresscritters Keith Odorboy gave $2500 to get the unAmerican reelected. Gotta be a black mark on the guy's record, but that goes without saying when it comes to KeithO's views and giant clueless mouth.

Posted by: djman1141 | December 15, 2010 3:32 PM | Report abuse

Raul supports amnesty and services/programs for illegal aliens. He supports open borders and has no problem with illegals taking jobs from American citizens. Praise the lord, Raul will be in the minority come January when the Republicans take over the House. Frankly who cares what he thinks.

Posted by: bb67chev | December 15, 2010 3:38 PM | Report abuse

Gotta love the extremist Republican party.

Nothing scares Republicans more in these days of economic uncertainty than whether or not some silver spooned s**t head is going to have to pay taxes on their multi millions in inheritance and teh gays serving openly in the military.

Way to go Teabaggers!.....not.


Posted by: DrainYou | December 15, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Grijalva's harmless. If he actually had any intelligence he would be dangerous but no chance in that.

Posted by: Desertdiva1 | December 15, 2010 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Greg, I hope so, otherwise 'class warfare' is...oh skip it, you get it or you wouldn't have mentioned it.

Posted by: shrink2 | December 15, 2010 3:41 PM | Report abuse

The Senate is debating START this afternoon. They passed cloture with 66 votes, one shy of what's needed to ratify.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | December 15, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

@Greg Sargent "shrink, I think he means middle class unemployed"

"And there's the specter of denying the middle class and unemployed their benefits from this deal if you vote it down."

I read the above statement as referring to the middle class tax cuts and the unemployment benefit extension.

Posted by: jnc4p | December 15, 2010 3:58 PM | Report abuse

Yes, we get it,

tax cuts ≠ benefits

Posted by: shrink2 | December 15, 2010 4:08 PM | Report abuse

So much for the repeal of Don't Ask Don't Tell. The Senate will spend the next day and a half debating the START treaty which does not have enough votes to pass. By getting the treaty on the agenda, repeal of DADT is off the agenda. Then it will be back to reconciling the tax bill which the House is likely to amend.

That is called run down the shot clock Dims.

Posted by: screwjob23 | December 15, 2010 4:09 PM | Report abuse


~Fox News Asks Cornyn: So Are You For Earmarking Or What? (VIDEO)~

"Now, you yourself have asked for earmarks, too, according to this list, some 16 million for your home state," Hemmer said. "Can you defend that, Senator?"

"Well, I believe I can, but I'm not going to, because I'm going to vote against this bill,"


So I am for voting this bill down, even though it could arguably help some of my constituents."

"But you favor earmarks is what you're saying," Hemmer said.

"I do not," Cornyn insisted. ...

"I got it, but I'm confused, then," Hemmer said. "Why is there $16 million in requests from you listed here? Is that not true?"

"Early on in the year I did request earmarks that I think are individually defensible,"

Frigging pathetic.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | December 15, 2010 4:22 PM | Report abuse

Drain You

Why don't you go up to Minnesota and help the Vikings dig out an outdoor stadium so they can lose to the Bears on Monday night.

They are looking for volunteers.

Maybe you can work out some of that hatred you have

Posted by: RainForestRising | December 15, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Had I wanted this kind of "deal" Obama has made, I would have voted for McCain and expected it.

Posted by: jimmyaj451 | December 15, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse

Obama has an IRS obsession

IRS audits have gone up by 11% - the wealthy and charities have been targeted.

I guess Obama has brought his CLASS STRUGGLE to the IRS.


Posted by: RainForestRising | December 15, 2010 4:28 PM | Report abuse


McConnell's got a few million in earmarks in that bill, too. AFAIK, he's not dropped them either.

Posted by: suekzoo1 | December 15, 2010 4:34 PM | Report abuse


A total of $132 million, predominantly boosting Republican candidates, was channeled into campaigns across the country by groups concealing the source of their money.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | December 15, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse


They were FOR the earmarks before they were AGAINST the bill.

Think we'll hear that statement 1,000,000 times over and over again in the media? Nah.

It's crazy. The country is being f'd over by the right and nobody really cares except us bloggers. Truly sad.

Posted by: Ethan2010 | December 15, 2010 4:40 PM | Report abuse

"and then the budget slashing frenzy will ensue."


Yeah, that happens so so often! Please do tell us when was the last time the budget was slashed? Like, ever?

How rotten are liberals in their souls that their single-minded obsession, 24/7, is expropriating other people and feeling outraged that there are "wealthy" people paying only about half of income taxes already?

What is the moral condition of people so obsessed with envy and mad for dispossessing others?

Posted by: quarterback1 | December 15, 2010 4:44 PM | Report abuse

Anything can happen.


The democrats could suddenly become deficit hawks.

I know toasters can fly.

Yes, they can.


Posted by: RainForestRising | December 15, 2010 4:54 PM | Report abuse

"What is the moral condition of people so obsessed with envy and mad for dispossessing others?"

They might be envious, but it's only because we're greedy. and, according to the first lady, gluttonous. Apparently the country is working its way through the list.

Posted by: NoVAHockey | December 15, 2010 4:54 PM | Report abuse

Meanwhile, the Democrats continue to try to pose as if they want to pass DADT repeal.

This way they can say they tried everything, they were desperate to get it passed, they even acted against the spirit of the rules. See how tough they were? Oh boy oh boy, they fought those Republicans as hard as they could.

Sure they lose anyway (except for the great health care industrial complex stimulus act of 2009), but they sure are trying to appear to be fighting.

Posted by: shrink2 | December 15, 2010 5:04 PM | Report abuse

"What is the moral condition of people so obsessed with envy and mad for dispossessing others?"

What is the moral condition of people so obsessed with greed and mad for repossessing others?

What are you worried about, you're getting your tax cuts and probably an underfunded government as well. You should be thanking Obama. I can't wait to see how many private sector jobs will be created next year now that we're all Republicans and tax cut/starve the beast boosters.

Posted by: lmsinca | December 15, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

This is further proof that LEFTIS LIBERALS have less sense than a rabid squirre. I wonder how many of them are closet Homosexuals or have ever even come close to serving in the military for that matter. They are all about touchey feel good trash but do not have the courage to stand up and be counted in the light of day. Just more closet rump ranger buddies.

Posted by: jmsmaxwell | December 15, 2010 5:40 PM | Report abuse

When listening to all the excuses all these parties give, it is a wonder that anyone want to vote for anyone. We blame the president for their mess, when it is the stupid people we elect to congress who put in and take out good things in a bill that the president may write.

Then the american people are only told of the part that will make news and nothing about anything that is good for the people. We hear more about what other people feel we should think and even when we hear and read the information from qualified people on the subject and actually read all the polls we still told half truth.

We hear so much on the DADT policy and each side has their own interuption of what studies has shown but the fact is if a person is in the service already doing his job and it is known that they are gay or lesbian why is the problem of letting them be able to stop hiding in the closets. Why do we think that it won't work, I would rather know who is beside me and knowning that they have the same freedom to be with their love one as I do, will not bother me at all.

Just like this tax bill the republican want if they don't get it then they don't want to extend unemployment benefits on people that was working and lost their job to no fault of their own, these are not people who have never work or held a job, but people who have worked enough time to get unemployment in the first place. Do this make them lazy because they cannot go back to the job they once held to earn a living, no. Some of those who are getting unemployment are also holding down part time jobs because their unemployment is not enough to cover their expenses and the pay is so low. The one who are collect top dollars unemployment are among the wealthy who have lost their job but because they worked they have the same right as those who earn low wages to collect unemployment. Have those who are in the top bracket look for jobs that would lower their wages from what they earn before, I doubt it very serious. But they are the same one who are first to call the middle class and the low wage earners that is collecting unemployment lazy, even though they will take low paying jobs, and sometimes two jobs just to make end meets.

We have two standards and one of them are going to fail and that is the ones that are in the upper class, they will be brought down to be with the middle class because of their greed. Their agenda is not to help others but themselves and they have encouraged companies to send jobs overseas to continue to make a profit. Because of their greed they will soon stop seeing profits oversea and some will end up losing their companies.

It will take all of the will power of the president to continue to help small business to hire more people and get this economic moving again. He will succeed from planning and thinking and the republicans and teabaggers will fail for reacting without thinking oof the american people. Their agenda is get rid of the president

Posted by: ocrmom59 | December 15, 2010 5:41 PM | Report abuse

Happy Hour Roundup posted:

Posted by: sargegreg | December 15, 2010 5:42 PM | Report abuse

"What is the moral condition of people ... blah blah blah?"

You wouldn't know a moral condition from a walnut. Stick to things you understand like being the mouthpiece for the Chamber of Commerce and the Koch Brothers.

As one can plainly see, the Cons know they've won. Heckuva job, Democrats.

Posted by: wbgonne | December 15, 2010 5:46 PM | Report abuse

Hi Imsinca:

Happy holidays!

Posted by: wbgonne | December 15, 2010 5:49 PM | Report abuse

"What are you worried about, you're getting your tax cuts and probably an underfunded government as well."

I am worried about continued runaway spending, and neverending bloodlust to tax the filthy "rich" people like me who, according to Bernie Sanders, have three jet planes and ten houses.

But I'm mainly just sick to death of hearing every single frigging day the drumbeat of the envious overlord class. I'm sick to death of Obama condescendingly preaching to us about the evil rich going untaxed. I'm sick to death of these worthless liberal bureaucrats, most of whom have never worked an honest day in their lives, clamoring to stick it to anyone who has worked hard enough to attain the tiniest bit of success.

It is sick and morally twisted. And now these lameduck Dems are going to make sure to stick every thumb in the public's eye they can on their way out.

The difference between the moral condition of these wretches and those you call "greedy" is that the champions of redistribution are obsessed with taking and giving away what other people have earned. They are "generous" only with other people's money. The single most important thing in the world to them -- no, the ONLY important thing -- is taking money from other people. They are sick, and they make me sick.

And, yes, I am in a foul mood about it, just from listening to these degenerate thugs.

Posted by: quarterback1 | December 15, 2010 5:59 PM | Report abuse

Cat will mew

And Dog will have its day

While our Congressional strumpets

fritter our money away.

Posted by: chamateddy | December 15, 2010 6:01 PM | Report abuse

Hi wbgonne, and back at ya. I love the holidays and this one's busier than normal so I'm not checking in as often. Enjoy and maybe the New Year will bring us better news.

I read a piece by Wendell Potter recently that said if the mandate goes it will hasten the demise of the Insurance Industrial Complex, so that may be something to look forward to. Ironic, especially since it's the Republicans trying to do away with it.

Like I said before, I'm focusing on more local issues for awhile. I've been left behind again and just don't have the energy required to invest in National politics this time around.

Posted by: lmsinca | December 15, 2010 6:05 PM | Report abuse

how many jobs did N.A.F.T.A. produce in the country,besides almost tripling our border patrol,using the national guard with no ammunition and of course our drones with no weapons.the only people getting any money out of this are the drug catels and the gun runners.but don`t worry arizona your ex governor got eveything under control.another border patroman killed does this woman live with herself.what a waste of taxpayer money to pay her salary.

Posted by: SISSD1 | December 15, 2010 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Aww, the Koch Brothers' feelings are hurt because we aren't nice while they steal our money and ruin our nation. Don't worry. I'm sure Obama will apologize for us.

Posted by: wbgonne | December 15, 2010 6:07 PM | Report abuse

I received a letter from my representative today stating that he did not support extending the tax cuts to the wealthiest Americans, but did support extending tax cuts for the middle class, the poor, and small businesses.

My representative also said that he did support extending unemployment benefits, which in most cases would amount to less than $300/wk for most individuals.

However, my representative also said that House Republicans favor extending the tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans, but do NOT support extending unemployment benefits for the middle class and poor.

My representative informed me that the bill to extend unemployment benefits to those families struggling to find work has been defeated in the House.

Take away all the adjectives which anyone uses to describe either Democrat or Republican, and what you are left with is the truth.

The House of Representatives just voted against extending unemployment benefits, which would amount to less than $300/wk for most individuals, to people who are struggling to find work to support their family.

The House of Representatives is poised, according to my representative, to vote for extending the tax cuts, which amounts to about $140,000 per year per individual for the wealthiest of those who will benefit from the tax cut extension.

$300/wk amounts to less than $13,000/yr. The House defeated even that paltry amount, while favoring those wealthiest individuals who will stand to GAIN $140,000 EACH YEAR these tax cuts are allowed to stand.

Most of us don't make close to $140,000 a year, let alone realize that in tax cuts!

So, what I don't understand is why anyone who makes less than $100,000 a year would WANT TO GIVE those kinds of tax cuts. I mean, the only people who benefit from these numbers are those who make well over several million dollars a year!

THOSE are the people who are bankrupting our country - not the poor schmucks who are losing their $300/wk unemployment.

People who make several million dollars each year have a DUTY TO PAY THEIR FAIR SHARE OF TAXES. Instead, they're trying to sell their fellow Americans a bill of goods - and they're laughing all the way to the bank.

It boggles my mind that so many decent Americans are getting fooled and they either refuse to believe it or they're just too dumb to figure it out.

Which are you?

IF you don't buy this bogus argument from our so-called legislators, regardless of whether they are Republican or Democrat, then please call your representative, your Senators, and write letters to the editors of your newspapers, put a sign in your yard, or do something to let your government representatives know that you aren't buying swampland in Florida this year, or that bridge they have for sale, either.

There's no reason that the ultra-wealthy should get these kinds of tax breaks when so many families will now be destitute because they can't find work & now no unemployment, either.

Merry Christmas, oh ye selfish hearts.

Posted by: kentuckywoman2 | December 15, 2010 6:09 PM | Report abuse

"You wouldn't know a moral condition from a walnut."

Hmm, I'm pretty sure I could in fact tell a moral condition from from your brain.

Posted by: quarterback1 | December 15, 2010 6:34 PM | Report abuse

Greg Sargent, author of this article states "In another sign that Obama's tax cut deal seems likely to pass..." Greg you freakin idiot! THERE ARE NO TAX CUTS IN THIS BILL!!!! This bill simply keeps status quo...BUT it includes another $800 BILION in SPENDING!!! SO this isn;t a tax's another spending bill. DO you F'n job "jounalist" and write about freakin dolts! And "F" you Congress and Odumba..."F" YOU!

Posted by: NO-bama | December 15, 2010 8:02 PM | Report abuse

It would be political suicide for ANY of these bozos in Congress to vote no on this bill. It has attached another 800 billion dollar stimulus. We are going to Hades in a hand basket. It is going to be a heck of a ride.

Posted by: eaglesnest1 | December 15, 2010 10:19 PM | Report abuse

Mortgage refinancing means re-funding the mortgage loan with better terms as well as conditions, most likely from a different lender. It is one way to save money. Search online for "123 Mortgage Refinance" they found me 3.1% refinance rate and also gave free analysis of my mortgage.

Posted by: brettroby | December 16, 2010 4:36 AM | Report abuse

How much loot would it take to get the wealthy preverts to shut up for a while about demanding more?
Or is there no amount that would be large enough.

Posted by: WDRussell | December 16, 2010 8:35 AM | Report abuse

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