Republicans send tax bill to Clinton
Veto is likely
By Bob Franken/CNN
September 16, 1999
Web posted at: 1:04 p.m. EDT (1704 GMT)
WASHINGTON -- Republicans are finally sending their tax-cut bill to the White House, trying to put the best face on what they know is an exercise in futility in the face of a presidential veto threat.
It's been more than a month since congressional Republicans passed the nearly $800 billion tax cut package. But they delayed letting the president veto it, hoping to use the August recess to create a national groundswell of political pressure.
"We urge the president to listen to the American people and sign this very important tax relief package," said Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott (R-Mississippi).
But there's bad news for Lott and Senate Republicans. A new CNN/USA Today/Gallup poll shows Republicans are losing ground. When asked about the "tough choices" involved in cutting taxes and still maintaining federal programs, 53 percent of those polled now say they favor Clinton's approach -- up from July's 48 percent. Support for the Republican approach has fallen from 40 percent in July to 38 percent in the new poll.
The president's fellow Democrats couldn't wait for him to get back from overseas, reaching for new ways to bash the Republican tax cut.
"In a sense," said Vice President Al Gore, "It would be kind of like an economic hurricane wreaking havoc on American's economy."
Republican congressional sources tell CNN that they continue to believe negotiating a tax-cut compromise with the White House would be a waste of time this year.
They caution, however, that anything is still possible, this year or next, even though 2000 is an important election year.