President Obama Signs Controversial Tax Bill

The tax bill will extend Bush-era tax cuts and ensure jobless benefits for the unemployed.

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President Obama signs controversial tax bill.

The Washington Post is reporting that President Obama signed into law the most significant tax bill in nearly a decade Friday. President Obama believes that this bill will boost the tepid economic recovery. Democrats rebelled against the bill because of the $700 billion that extending the Bush-era tax cuts would add to the deficit. Many also believed that the benefits of the bill were skewed too much toward the wealthy. Noticeably absent at the signing were Democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid. The $858 billion package prevents taxes from rising on New Year's Day for virtually every American household. The measure will also guarantee unemployed workers in hard-hit states up to 99 weeks of jobless benefits through the end of next year. And it will create major new incentives for business and consumer spending in 2011, including a two-percentage-point reduction in the Social Security payroll tax that would let workers keep as much as $2,136. Some critics feel that President Obama is hedging his bets, while others believe that he sold out to Republicans, ostensibly succumbing to blackmail. There may be some truth to both sides, but only time will tell how this controversial move will play out -- especially in 2012.

Read more at the Washington Post.