GOP leaders mark fiscal New Year with tax warning

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Both the House and Senate have already recessed for the election, meaning lawmakers will not act to avert the "fiscal cliff" of sudden tax increases and budget cuts until mid-November at the earliest. Boehner cited, as he has before, a study from Ernst & Young projecting that tax increases resulting from the expiration of the George W. Bush-era tax rates would cost the economy 700,000 jobs. 

Economists have said the combination of tax increases and automatic spending cuts could send the U.S. back into recession in 2013 if they take effect. 

Obama wants to extend current tax rates for the middle class but has vowed to veto any legislation that extends rates for top earners.

“The House has taken bipartisan action to prevent our economy from going over the fiscal cliff. We have passed legislation to ensure taxes aren’t raised on any American while also protecting our national security in a turbulent world,” said House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), the third-ranking Republican. “However, we cannot avert another economic downturn unless the President and Senate Democrats stop their political posturing and work together with us.”

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