Dems may drop millionaires tax in year-end dispute
Dec 14, 6:10 PM (ET)
By DAVID ESPO

WASHINGTON (AP) – Democrats may jettison their demand for higher taxes on millionaires as part of legislation to extend Social Security tax cuts for most Americans, officials said Wednesday as President Barack Obama and Congress struggled to clear critical year-end bills without triggering a partial government shutdown.

Republicans, too, signaled an eagerness to avoid gridlock and adjourn for the holidays. With a massive, $1 trillion funding bill blocked by Democrats, GOP lawmakers and aides floated the possibility of a backup measure to keep the government in operation for several days after the money runs out Friday night.

It all comes at the close of a year of divided government – with a tea party-flavored majority in the House and Obama’s allies in the Senate – that has veered from near- catastrophe to last-minute compromise repeatedly since last January.

The rhetoric Wednesday was biting at times.

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