Politics & Government

Democratic Missouri Senate hopeful Carnahan would keep Bush tax cuts

At the governor's annual Ham Breakfast at the Missouri State Fair in Sedalia on Thursday, Senate hopeful Robin Carnahan gave voters something to chew on besides their bacon.

The Democrat shocked some by announcing that she was going against leaders of her own party by backing an indefinite extension of tax cuts made when George W. Bush was president.

"Now is not the time to raise taxes," Carnahan said.

With that she became the latest to weigh in on an increasingly treacherous issue facing Democrats across the nation: What to do about the Bush tax cuts set to expire at year's end?

President Barack Obama favors extending the cuts for middle-class Americans, but ending them for wealthy taxpayers. Extending all of the tax cuts would add to the budget deficit that was projected Thursday to surpass $1.3 trillion, only a slight improvement from last year's record total.

Earlier this summer, senior Democrats had said they didn't expect the issue to come up until after the midterm elections in November. But Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid of Nevada signaled this month that he plans to raise the issue after lawmakers return from their five-week summer recess.

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