The fiscal cliff deal being negotiated by House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell is an “economic no-brainer” and “not worth a dime,” President Obama said Monday.
The deal is expected to be finalized Tuesday.
Obama said the deal was not “just an election issue, but a political one as well,” as it would allow businesses to keep their payroll taxes, pay their employees more and “save themselves” billions in federal revenue.
“It’s a big deal, and I believe that Congress, in its first days of the new Congress, will take a hard look at this agreement and decide if it’s worth passing,” Obama said.
McConnell said the president should veto the deal because it is a “massive tax increase” on the middle class and will be “not helpful to the middle-class.”
Boehner said he and McConnell have come up with a deal that will lower taxes and create jobs and boost the economy.
“It will make America stronger,” Boehner said.
“It will create jobs.
It will put money in people’s pockets.”
“This deal is about the middle and working class, not just the millionaires and billionaires,” McConnell said.
“I think this deal is not going to bring a lot of relief to the families of people who are struggling.”
The House is expected on Monday to approve the tax hike and the tax increase package by a vote of 218-206.
The Senate is expected next week to vote on the package and vote to disapprove of the deal, which will then go to Obama’s desk.
The White House had initially predicted that the deal would be a bipartisan win.
The president called the deal a “historic” win in an interview with Fox News’ Neil Cavuto.
Boesing said he was “very pleased” that the agreement was negotiated in a bipartisan fashion, adding that it would make Americans “more prosperous.”
He said the agreement is also expected to reduce the deficit, which has ballooned to $3 trillion since 2009.
In the interview, Boehner also said the tax deal is likely to increase the federal debt by about $100 billion.
He said that the president and the Democratic Party have been “the ones who have taken the heat” for the high debt and that he was proud of the fact that Republicans have been able to get the deal through the Senate.
Republicans have made the deal in a last-minute bid to pass the bill before a midnight deadline that was set to pass by a simple majority.
Democrats have argued that the debt has increased because Republicans are cutting spending and are spending less than Democrats, while spending more than they were in the past.