Will federal workers 'bear the brunt' of paying for payroll tax cut?

Friday - 12/2/2011, 9:02pm EST

Humberto Sanchez, staff writer, Roll Call

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By Jack Moore
Federal News Radio

A pay freeze for another three and a 10 percent cut — about 200,000 positions — in the federal workforce is what Republicans wanted in exchange for extending the payroll tax cut.

The current tax cut runs out at the end of the month and has become only the latest political logjam in Congress

Even though the bill with the pay freeze was voted down in the Senate on Thursday, that doesn't necessarily mean the idea is going away, said CQ Roll Call reporter Humberto Sanchez in an interview on In Depth with Francis Rose.

That's because House Republicans have indicated they support such a measure, and their plan to extend the payroll tax holiday would also likely include a similar provision, Sanchez said.

He said it was likely federal workers would "bear the brunt" of paying for the extension of the payroll tax cut.

"Right now as [lawmakers] discuss ways to extend the payroll tax cut, it looks like federal workers will be in the mix," he added.

The latest congressional machinations come as the clock runs down on the current continuing resolution, keeping the government running, which is set to expire Dec. 16.

The House and Senate have been negotiating on an omnibus bill, which would wrap the nine remaining appropriations bills into a single bill, as opposed to another continuing resolution.

Lawmakers in the House have made a lot of progress on the bill, Sanchez said, and hope to have it on the House floor by the week of Dec. 12.

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