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January 01, 2013

Senate Overwhelmingly Passes Fiscal Cliff Deal

"The Senate, in a pre-dawn vote two hours after the deadline passed to avert automatic tax increases, overwhelmingly approved legislation Tuesday that would allow tax rates to rise only on affluent Americans while temporarily suspending sweeping, across-the-board spending cuts," the New York Times reports.

The deal passed 89-8, "with just three Democrats and five Republicans voting no. Although it lost the support of some of the Senate's most conservative members, the broad coalition that pushed the accord across the finish line could portend swift House passage as early as New Year's Day."

The Wall Street Journal notes one of the most strident opponents was Sen. Tom Harkin (D-IA) who "declared the compromise benefited the wealthiest Americans at the expense of those who could afford it the least."

The other seven senators voting against the bill: were Sen. Tom Carper (D-DE), Sen. Michael Bennet (D-CO), Sen. Charles Grassley (R-IA), Sen. Mike Lee (R-UT), Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), Sen. Marco Rubio (R-FL) and Sen. Richard Shelby (R-AL).

Wonk Wire summarizes the key features of the deal.


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