The Hagstrom Report

Agriculture News As It Happens


Boehner to offer ‘Plan B’ this week

Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio

Rep. John Boehner, R-Ohio

House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, told fellow House Republicans today that they should prepare for a “Plan B” to limit tax increases for all those who make less than $1 million per year if he and President Barack Obama cannot reach agreement on a larger tax package.

But the plan has already run into opposition from conservatives, House Democrats and the White House, the Los Angeles Times reported today.

According to the National Journal, Boehner told his caucus, “The White House just can't seem to bring itself to agree to a ‘balanced’ approach, and time is running short. Taxes are going up on everyone on Jan. 1. They’re baked into current law. And we have to stop whatever tax rate increases we can.”

If that bill passes, it would be sent, along with a House-passed bill extending the current tax rates enacted under former President George W. Bush for everyone, to the Senate, and it would up to the Senate and Obama to decide whether to finalize that legislation, National Journal said.

But White House Press Secretary Jay Carney dismissed the speaker’s “Plan B” suggestion in a statement, saying it “can’t pass the Senate and therefore will not protect middle-class families.”

He added that Obama “is not willing to accept a deal that doesn’t ask enough of the very wealthiest in taxes and instead shifts the burden to the middle class and seniors.”

Boehner left his options open for a wider agreement with the White House before the end of the year.

“We're going to keep the door open in hopes the president can find a way to support a balanced approach,” he told members, National Journal said.

The farm bill has not mentioned in the latest reports on the “fiscal cliff” negotiations.