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WASHINGTON— House Democrats voted Thursday to reject President Barack Obama’s tax deal with Republicans in its current form, but it was unclear how significantly the package might need to be changed.
By voice vote in a closed caucus meeting, Democrats passed a resolution saying the tax package should not come to the House floor for consideration as written, even though no formal House bill has been drafted. Rep. Peter DeFazio, D-Ore., introduced the resolution.
Said Rep. Lloyd Doggett, D-Texas: “If it’s take it or leave it, we’ll leave it.”
Rep. Jim McDermott, D-Wash., said “it’s a pretty clear message. We don’t like the bill.”
The vote will at least temporarily stall what had seemed to be a grudging Democratic movement toward the tax package. Before the caucus vote took place, House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer said Obama’s tax compromise embodies “the objective we need to reach” even though Democrats dislike several components.
“We’re going to have an increase in taxes on working Americans ... if we continue to have gridlock,” Hoyer, a Maryland Democrat, said on MSNBC.
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