The Fiscal Cliff Deal, brokered by McConnell and Vice President Biden, has passed the House. The final vote was 257-167 with 8 not voting. Democrats cheered on the House floor as they passed their tax hike while protecting loopholes. The Cliff has been averted — for another two months. Of North Carolina’s 13 Representatives, there were 7 NAY votes and 6 AYE votes. The breakdown of those votes by Vote position and Party:
- GK Butterfield (D)
- David Price (D)
- Larry Kissell (D)
- Heath Shuler (D)
- Mel Watt (D)
- Howard Coble (R)
- Renee Ellmers (R)
- Walter Jones (R)
- Virginia Foxx (R)
- Sue Myrick (R)
- Patrick McHenry (R)
- Mike McIntyre (D)
- Brad Miller (D)
The Senate vote results were 89-8 with 3 not voting. Both of North Carolina’s Senators, Kay Hagan (D) and Richard Burr (R) voted in favor of the bill. Senator Hagan is up for reelection in 2014. Her seat is already marked as at risk, this vote will likely solidify that status.
The deal was largely unpopular with Republicans for its lack of spending cuts and the CBO reporting it will add $4 trillion to the deficit over the next ten years and being a $600 billion tax hike with only $15 billion in cuts, however that did not keep some high profile GOPers from voting AYE, including Representative Paul Ryan, author of the Path to Prosperity. Speaker John Boehner also voted AYE, with some reluctance apparently. The Speaker released a statement last night announcing the passage of the deal. Via Zero Hedge, who notes this deal should be called “The Obama Tax Cuts”; the joke being this “cut” is raising taxes on 77% of Americans:
“The federal government has a spending problem that has led to a $16 trillion national debt that threatens our country’s future. On the day after the election, I proposed that both parties work together to avert the fiscal cliff in a manner that would ensure 2013 is the year we finally enact entitlement reform and pro-growth tax reform to begin to solve our country’s debt problem.
“Now the focus turns to spending. The American people re-elected a Republican majority in the House, and we will use it in 2013 to hold the president accountable for the ‘balanced’ approach he promised, meaning significant spending cuts and reforms to the entitlement programs that are driving our country deeper and deeper into debt.
“Without meaningful reform of entitlements, real spending controls, and a fairer, cleaner tax code, our debt will continue to grow, and our economy will continue to stumble. Republicans stand for a stronger, more prosperous America, rich in opportunity and free of the debt that threatens our children’s future. On this New Year’s Day, we renew our commitment to that vision, humbled by the opportunity to serve.”
President Obama was quick to take the spotlight and credit for the deal with a late night press conference. With the Fiscal Cliff averted for at least two more months, the President then led by example and wasted no time spending more money. The AP announced he would be returning to Hawaii on vacation, costing taxpayers around $3 million:
BREAKING: Obama to depart Washington late Tuesday night and return to Hawaii for vacation. -BW
— The Associated Press (@AP) January 2, 2013