Now, fortunately, we shouldn’t need long negotiations or drama to solve that part of the problem. While there may be disagreement in Congress over whether or not to raise taxes on folks making over $250,000 a year, nobody—not Republicans, not Democrats—want taxes to go up for folks making under $250,000 a year. So let’s not wait. Even as we’re negotiating a broader deficit reduction package, let’s extend the middle-class tax cuts right now. Let’s do that right now. (Applause.)
That one step—that one step—would give millions of families—98 percent of Americans and 97 percent of small businesses—the certainty that they need going into the new year. It would immediately take a huge chunk of the economic uncertainty off the table, and that will lead to new jobs and faster growth. Business will know that consumers, they’re not going to see a big tax increase. They’ll know that most small businesses won’t see a tax increase. And so a lot of the uncertainty that you’re reading about, that will be removed.
In fact, the Senate has already passed a bill doing exactly this, so all we need is action from the House. And I’ve got the pen ready to sign the bill right away. I’m ready to do it. (Applause.) I’m ready to do it. (Applause.)
The American people understand that we’re going to have differences and disagreements in the months to come. They get that. But on Tuesday, they said loud and clear that they won’t tolerate dysfunction. They won’t tolerate politicians who view compromise as a dirty word. Not when so many Americans are still out of work. Not when so many families and small business owners are still struggling to pay the bills.
What the American people are looking for is cooperation. They’re looking for consensus. They’re looking for common sense. Most of all, they want action. I intend to deliver for them in my second term, and I expect to find willing partners in both parties to make that happen. So let’s get to work.
Thank you very much, everybody. Thank you. (Applause.)
END 1:15 P.M. EST