Barack Obama hails passage of "fiscal cliff" deal by Congress
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As the Congress passed the "fiscal cliff" deal ending fears of tax hikes among a vast majority of Americans, US President Barack Obama today said this would avert possibility of recession in the economy and he would sign the bill into a law.
"Thanks to the votes of Democrats and Republicans in Congress, I will sign a law that raises taxes on the wealthiest 2 per cent of Americans while preventing a middle
class tax hike that could have sent the economy back into a recession and obviously had a severe impact on families all across America," Obama told the White House press corps.
The Republican-controlled US House of Representatives voted 257-167 late Tuesday night on the "fiscal-cliff" bill that was passed by the Senate in the wee hours of Tuesday.
Obama's address reflected on his experience during negotiations which the White House had with the Republican leadership in the Congress on avoiding a "fiscal cliff", for which he had to cut short his year-end vacation in Hawaii.
Shortly before mid-night, Obama left White House for Hawaii to join the First Lady and his two daughters for the rest of their annual vacation.
"Under this law, more than 98 per cent of Americans and 97 per cent of small business will not see their income taxes go up," he said.
Millions of families will continue to receive tax credits to help raise their children and send them to college," he added.
Vice President Joe Biden, who played a key role in negotiating a deal with the Republicans, was standing by his side in the White House press room.
"Companies will continue to receive tax credits for the research that they do, the investments they make and the clean energy jobs that they create," Obama said.
"This law is one more step in the broader effort to strengthen our economy and broaden opportunity," he said, adding that the agreement further reduces the deficit by raising USD 620 billion in revenue from the wealthiest households.
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