The tax cuts are bound to become a hot campaign issue, with Republicans already accusing Democrats of allowing tax rates to increase. "To be clear, a vote to adjourn Congress at the end of this week will be a vote to raise taxes on the American people and kill American jobs," states a news release from the office of House Republican Leader John Boehner of Ohio.
Over the weekend, Hoyer tried to push back against this message, calling the possible 2011 tax hikes a "Republican increase in middle-income taxes" since the expiration of the tax cuts was part of the original legislation passed in 2001 and 2003 by a Republican majority in Congress. The legislation was written that way in order to appear to hold down the long-term costs of the tax cuts in the so-called "out years" of budget forecasts.
Hoyer also said that Democrats can "guarantee" passage of a middle-class tax extension during the lame duck session.