Leading House Republican has reservations about tax deal

The No. 4 House Republican confessed Tuesday that he's "not initially thrilled" about the tax deal announced by President Obama.

Rep. Jeb Hensarling (R-Texas), the newly-elected chairman of the House Republican Conference, said that the two-year extension of expiring income tax cuts don't provide enough certainty in the economy.

"I need to see the details, and, no, I'm not initially thrilled about it. That's perhaps what a successful negotiation is all about," Hensarling said on Fox News.

The deal put forth by Obama, which is coupled with extensions in tax credits and unemployment insurance, has been met with consternation on the left and some dyspepsia on the right.

Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-Minn.), the leader of the House Tea Party Caucus, said the GOP may well vote down the deal. Combined with liberals who are mulling a vote against the plan, the tax deal announced by the president could be in danger on Capitol Hill.

"Ensuring that people don't receive a tax increase for the next two years is vitally important, but ultimately that's not enough confidence, that's not enough certainty," Hensarling said.

Like Bachmann, his onetime foe in the race to become conference chairman, Hensarling expressed reservations that the 13-month extension in jobless benefits isn't offset by spending cuts elsewhere.

"If we're going to extend the unemployment insurance beyond its normal level, let's at least pay for it and get the nation off its ruinous spending path," he argued.