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Could Boehner's Plan B Help Obama? Could Boehner's Plan B Help Obama? Could Boehner's Plan B Help Obama? Could Boehner's Plan B He...

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Could Boehner's Plan B Help Obama?

Speaker of the House John Boehner, R-Ohio, winces while talking to a reporter on the way to a closed-door meeting with House Republicans on Tuesday.(AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

photo of Elahe Izadi
December 19, 2012

House Speaker John Boehner indicated Wednesday that his Plan B tax bill has the votes to pass the House tomorrow.

That would mean a majority of Republicans are willing to let tax rates go up on millionaires. But does a vote for tax increases on the wealthy make it easier for Boehner and Obama to close a deal?

Democrats sure think so. 

"If it wins, it would show that at least a large percentage of Republicans are willing to let the top rate go up for some Americans," argued Democratic Senate message man Chuck Schumer. "If it helps Speaker Boehner come to a deal, so be it."

In the same breath, Schumer railed against Plan B, calling it a non-starter and saying "there is no way this plan passes in the Senate. No way."

Meanwhile, Obama's proposed spending cuts have made some Democrats uncomfortable.

Democrats have been dodging questions on those cuts, but Democratic Sen. Tom Harkin said Social Security reforms should be off the table and dealt with in a separate bill later.

“I’m not supportive of chained CPI at all, but again, I recognize realities,” Harkin said Wednesday. “I didn’t say I agree with everything the president did. This is one area where I think we’re going to have to do some examination of chained CPI."

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