White House welcomes tax deal in Congress

December 17, 2011 05:23

WASHINGTON - The White House hailed a compromise deal on extending payroll taxes for two months as a "significant victory" for the American people and the US economy, even though it fell short of US President Barack Obama's original push for broader tax relief.

"Failing to extend this tax cut would have had a damaging effect on our recovery and job growth," White House communications director Dan Pfeiffer said. "The president urges Congress now to finish up their business."

Pfeiffer said the deal reached by lawmakers met Obama's "test" that a middle-class tax hike be averted in the new year. But he made no mention of a provision Republicans won - and the Democratic president had originally resisted - calling for an expedited decision on a Canada-to-Texas oil pipeline.

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