“If we can focus on tax cuts across the board for everyone, and move away from the Social Security debate, that would be great,” says a Republican House Ways and Means staffer. “We’d much rather have the fight about tax cuts.”
Coming off the recent successful House and Senate session, which saw the passage of major energy, transportation, and trade legislation, Republicans are looking to return in the fall to a slate of possible successes, and they’d like the permanent passage of the tax cuts to be part of it. “With a Supreme Court nomination victory, sound immigration reform and the tax cuts, we’d be a good shape leading into the spring with some momentum,” says a Senate Republican staffer.
If the White House decides to push hard on the tax cuts it would be more than a small victory for House Republican Leader Tom DeLay, who pressed the White House after the 2004 election to put off the Social Security reform battle until after it had notched some victories on the tax front for middle class Americans.p> CLINTON COMMITMENT br> Sen. Hillary Clinton is refusing to buy into polls that show a clear majority of New York voters want her to commit to a full, second Senate term before they will vote for her. Last week saw the release of a Quinnipiac poll that revealed that more than 60 percent of New Yorkers — including 50 percent of Democrats surveyed — said that they want Clinton to promise she will serve the full-term if she is re-elected. /p>
Of course, Clinton’s husband made a similar promise to the voters of Arkansas back in the 1990s that he would not seek the presidency if re-elected to the governorship, and we know where that landed the nation.
Hillary’s situation now appears further complicated with the emergence of Westchester County Republican Jeanine Pirro, a formidable prosecuting attorney, a moderate, and a politician a number of Republicans in the state had expected to run for governor. Pirro apparently has little interest in succeeding George Pataki and instead has set her sights on a Senate seat.