White House threatens veto of GOP's 'Plan B'

The White House threatened on Wednesday to veto a Republican proposal raising taxes only on households making more than $1 million a year. 

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The "Plan B" legislation is being pushed by Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) as an alternative to a broader deficit-reduction package.

"The deficit reduction is minimal, and perversely, given its authors, solely through tax increases with no spending cuts," Dan Pfeiffer, the White House communications director, said in a statement. 

"This approach does not meet the test of balance, and the president would veto the legislation in the unlikely event of its passage."

The House is lining up the legislation for a Thursday vote. It would allow tax rates to rise to 39.6 percent for those making $1 million or more, while making the Bush-era tax rates permanent for everyone else. 

Boehner is trying to rally his own conference to back the bare-bones bill, which doesn't deal with extending unemployment benefits or the debt limit. 

"The American people have been clear that they will not accept an economic approach that places too big of a burden on the middle class, seniors, students and the most vulnerable Americans while asking too little of the wealthiest Americans," Pfeiffer added. 


Boehner spokesman Brendan Buck, however, charged the White House with failing to present a “balanced” deficit-reduction proposal and said House Republicans would move ahead with their plan.

“The White House’s opposition to a backup plan to ensure taxes don’t rise on American families is growing more bizarre and irrational by the day,” said Buck in a statement. “Republicans have always said a broader, ‘balanced’ plan is the ideal solution, and we have put one forward. 

“In the absence of a ‘balanced’ solution from the president, however, we must act to stop taxes from rising across the board in 12 days,” he added. “If Democrats disapprove of this bill, then there is a simple solution: Amend it in the Senate and send it back to the House.”

This story was updated at 11:03 a.m.