That Washington

Late Breaking: Sales Tax Deduction Bill Fails in Senate

By Josh Feit September 29, 2010

The always-politicized-in-election-years-in-Washington-state sales tax deduction  (worth about $600 annually to families in Washington state) took center stage this week and this evening in the run-up to election season recess.

We'll have a full report on the behind the scenes politics in Morning Fizz tomorrow, but here's the basic:

Democratic Sen. Max Baucus (D-Montana) has been pushing a broader tax break extension bill that included breaks for bio-fuel and other green economy goodies—and the sales tax deduction—for months. The GOP successfully filibustered against it several times throughout the summer.

The Republicans finally killed Baucus' version last Thursday.

The Democrats (Baucus actually) killed a Republican stand-alone sales tax deduction bill on Monday.

And finally, the Republicans, complaining they hadn't read it, killed a Democratic (Sen. Patty Murray) stand-alone sales tax deduction bill as time expired tonight.

"They hadn't read their own bill?" a Muray staffer quipped this evening. (Murray's version was nearly identical to the stand-alone version the GOP proposed on Monday, except Murray's version, to get Baucus to go along her office says, only extended the deduction for a year. The GOP version on Monday had extended it permanently.)

Footnote: Who killed Sen. Murray's version tonight? Sen. John Thune (R-SD). Thune is hosting a fundraiser for Murray challenger Dino Rossi (and others including Sharron Angle) in D.C. next week on October 5.
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