McIntyre, Jones vote "no" on cliff deal; Burr, Hagan vote "yes" - WECT, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

McIntyre, Jones vote "no" on cliff deal; Burr, Hagan vote "yes"

Rep. Mike McIntyre (NC7) voted against the "fiscal cliff" deal that passed the House late Tuesday night Rep. Mike McIntyre (NC7) voted against the "fiscal cliff" deal that passed the House late Tuesday night

WASHINGTON, DC (WECT) – Congressmen Mike McIntyre (NC7) and Walter B. Jones (NC3) both voted against the bill to block the so-called "fiscal cliff", which passed the U.S. House late Tuesday night. The same bill had passed the U.S. Senate early Tuesday morning, with approval votes from both Sen. Richard Burr and Sen. Kay Hagan of North Carolina.

Rep. McIntyre released this statement to WECT immediately after the vote: "It is absolutely critical that a sensible resolution of the ‘fiscal cliff' be reached with bi-partisan support, but the Senate's proposal is not the way to resolve this important issue for the following reasons:

-It will add almost $4 trillion to the nation's debt;

-It delays spending cuts; and

-It does not provide for comprehensive tax reform that can help our small businesses create jobs.

"The financial markets, small business and the American people are looking for stability and accountability, not a temporary fix.  A comprehensive solution is needed that includes getting our national debt under control and reining in government spending."

Rep. Jones' office released this comment from the Congressman Wednesday afternoon: "I'm tired of seeing Congress and the White House rob our children and grandchildren," said Congressman Jones.  "America is nearly broke financially because its political leadership keeps passing bills like this that simply kick the can down the road.  $40 in tax increases for every $1 in spending cuts?  Adding $4 trillion to the debt?  Are you kidding?"

"The way this deal went down reinforces what America hates about the way Washington is being run," continued Congressman Jones.  "Backroom deals done in the middle of the night at the zero hour are never good for the American people.  This will be no exception.  We're already hearing that millions in special corporate welfare subsidies were included for Hollywood, algae producers, electric motorcycles and many others."     

The legislation is headed to the White House for President Barack Obama's signature. The bill will avoid, for now, the major tax increases and government spending cuts that had been scheduled to take effect with the new year.

The measure raises tax rates on incomes over $400,000 for individuals and $450,000 for couples, a victory for Obama.

It also extends expiring unemployment benefits for the long-term jobless, prevents a cut in fees for doctors who treat Medicare patients and cancels a $900 pay increase due to lawmakers in March.

Sen. Burr released this statement after the early morning vote: "While the deal we voted on tonight was far from perfect and not as comprehensive as I had hoped. I supported this proposal because it protects 99% of Americans from increased taxes, it provides permanent certainty on the estate tax and Alternative Minimum Tax, it provides one year of protection for the reimbursement of doctors, it extends unemployment insurance for one year, and the net result of the deal provides over $600 billion that should be used to pay down our national debt."

Sen. Hagan released this statement after the early morning vote: "While I believe it is unacceptable that Washington has once again waited until the eleventh hour to find a solution, and though I would have preferred a comprehensive, balanced solution to avert the fiscal cliff and begin reducing the deficit, I voted for the plan put forth tonight so that we can stop a tax hike on middle class families in North Carolina. The average family in our state will see their taxes increase by $2,200 without this action. We still have issues surrounding the fiscal cliff that we must resolve, including the defense cuts that will have an outsized impact in North Carolina and our skyrocketing federal debt. The challenges we face may be complex, but working together should not be this hard, and I will continue urging my colleagues on both sides of the aisle and both sides of the Capitol to come together to work on a commonsense solution."

The president said in an appearance late Tuesday in the White House that the House vote to prevent a mix of tax increases and spending cuts avoids a problem that could have sent the economy back into recession.

President Obama says the deficit is "still too high" and warns that he will not negotiate with Congress over another increase in the nation's debt ceiling.

To see how all House members voted on the bill, click here.

Copyright 2013 WECT. All rights reserved.  AP contributed to this report.

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