Rep. Van Hollen talks going ‘Off The Cliff’

Your campaign buttons must be working. The Last Word’s Off The Cliff campaign came up today during an interview with Rep. Chris Van Hollen on C-Span’s Washington Journal.

A call-in viewer specifically asked the Democratic congressman from Maryland about the show’s effort, urging lawmakers to take a bold leap to restore fairness in taxation. Addressing the issue, Van Hollen responded “we prefer to act now” but declared they are “not going to be bullied by the Republicans” either. The discussion gets going at the 25:33 marker.
With respect to the fiscal cliff, what I’ve said is that we prefer to act now but Republicans hold the key to this lock in their hands as soon as they decide not to hold the 98 percent hostage to the 2 percent we can move forward. But we take the idea of deficit reduction seriously, and so they’ve finally got to let that hostage go so to speak, so that we can move forward. And we are not going to be bullied by the Republicans in the providing another round of tax breaks for the very top when we have got to get out fiscal house in order and where we want to make sure that folks on Medicare and social security don’t take a big hit in order to provide another round of tax breaks for folks at the very top. And so it’s true that by law all of those tax cuts expire and so you’d be starting from a new base line, you’d be starting from scratch, but I should just emphasize again we hope we don’t get to that point. But the keys to the locker in Republican hands right now and all the have to do is do what the president said, let’s move forward with what we agree on, what the Republicans say they agree on which is extending tax relief to the people under $250,000.  

The first showdown vote on the expiring Bush-era tax cuts is scheduled for Wednesday in Senate.

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Fiscal Cliff

Rep. Van Hollen talks going 'Off The Cliff'