Boehner said after the election that he would be open to ‘new revenue’ through tax increases, but seems intent on doing this only by eliminating deductions and loopholes. This steadfast insistence on coddling the wealthiest Americans at the expense of everyone else means Congress will have to consider cutting deductions that directly benefit the economy. These include the mortgage interest deduction, which costs the government an estimated $100 billion a year but fuels the housing market – which still needs all the help it can get.
If the Bush-era tax cuts expire as scheduled in January, the House Republicans would be unable to renew them over a Democratic-controlled Senate and an Obama veto threat. Keeping those cuts in place for those earning less than $250,000 might be the most palatable option for Boehner, who doesn’t seem to understand who holds the leverage here.