RIPR News
4:25 pm
Fri December 10, 2010

Whitehouse undecided on Obama tax plan

PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Senator Sheldon Whitehouse says including support for renewable energy makes him more likely to support preserving the Bush-era tax cuts.

Whitehouse spoke Friday while visiting a Providence renewable energy company whose annual revenues have grown from $200,000 to $50 million over the last decade. He says the renewable energy tax credits are vital for helping companies like Alteris to compete against foreign counterparts.

"I think it's a big plus that all of these elements are in," Whitehouse says. "We haven't made any final decision yet. But these elements certainly moved us in that direction."

At the same time, Whitehouse says keeping the Bush-era tax cuts will mark a victory for Republican partisan politics. And he says he agrees with critics who call the tax plan a reckless expansion of deficit spending.

But Whitehouse says he might back the continued tax cuts since the legislation would extend unemployment benefits.

"I'm still sort of trying to digest the notion that something so wrong and so unappealing has now been attached to something that is so important and necessary for basic standards of American living to be maintained here for unemployed folks."

The Senate is due to vote on the measure Monday.

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