Rep. Mike Rogers Supports Bill to Avoid Fiscal Cliff

The U.S. House went along with a Senate plan Tuesday to address expiring Bush-era tax cuts while delaying spending cuts.

The U.S. House of Representatives voted 257-167 late Tuesday night to endorse a Senate vote on a bill that would avert the so-called "Fiscal Cliff." This bill extends the tax cuts passed during George W. Bush's presidency that would have expired on Jan. 1, and delays automatic spending cuts.

A complete list of the yeas and nays can be found on the website for the House of Representatives.

U.S. Rep Mike Rogers (R-Brighton) was among five of the state’s eight GOP House members who crossed party lines in voting for the deal, which will extend curent tax rates for all wage earners making below $400,000 and couples making below $450,000. Republicans voting in favor included Candice Miller, Fred Upton, Dave Camp and Dan Benishek.

Only 8.5 percent of Democrats voted nay, while 35.7 percent of Republicans voted in favor.

The Senate legislation passed early Tuesday 89-8. The bill currently awaits President Barack Obama's signature.

State Rep. Gary Peters (D) also voted for the legislation and blasted his Republican colleagues for taking taxpayers to the brink.

"I have been exceptionally frustrated by the Republicans' insistence on drawing out this self-inflicted crisis until the last possible moment," he said in a statement issued Wednesday.

"In the New Year, we must come together to achieve long-term solutions to our nation’s financial challenges."

However Rogers said Obama is in for a bumpy road and since he has focused efforts railing against Congress and Republicans, saying the president "doesn't play well with others," according to the Wall Street Journal.

U.S. Rep. Sander Levin (D-Royal Oak) emphasized the following about the legislation:

  • It is vital for 114 million middle class families, whose tax cuts are made permanent.
  • It is vital for two million unemployed American workers who need continuation of their insurance while they continue to look for work.
  • It is vital for 30 million middle-income Americans who otherwise would have been hit by the Alternative Minimum Tax.
  • It is vital for 25 million working families and students who benefit from the Child Tax Credit, the Earned Income Tax Credit and the American Opportunity Tax Credit, which helps families pay for college.

“The idea of allowing taxes to rise on every American family and small business was completely unacceptable to me" Miller noted in a statement on her website. “While this deal was not perfect, it was certainly better than the alternative which would have been a more than $500 billion tax increase on our economy in 2013 alone."

bvwatson January 07, 2013 at 12:19 AM
The article says that Rogers "was among five of the state’s eight GOP House members who crossed party lines in voting for the deal". I don't understand the "crossed party lines" phrase here. 5 of 8 GOP representatives from Michigan voted in favor. That would suggest either that there was no "party line" or that the "party line" was in favor of the bill. In any case, what is the significance of taking a "party line" on this bill? Isn't the important question whether the deal will benefit people or not? Like all bills, the question is "who benefits? who gets hurt?", and not "what does the party say I should do?". The sooner we stop thinking along "party lines", the sooner we will actually move forward.


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