Dec 18, 2010
Barack Obama has won passage of a tax bill through Congress that infuriated his liberal supporters because he bowed to Republican demands to extend tax cuts for the wealthy.
- A d v e r t i s e m e n t
But the deal opens the way for him to push through other legislation before the Republicans take control of the House of Representatives in the new year.
Congress approved the $858bn (¬£550bn) package last night, extending Bush-era tax cuts for a further two years after Democrats in the House dropped their threat to block the legislation. Part of the agreement included the extension of unemployment insurance for the long-term jobless.
The legislation averts an across-the-board tax rise for most Americans. Obama originally pressed for the reductions for the middle class and poor to be extended but for taxes on the better off to rise once again.