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Bill Nelson's tax vote could help the budget... of Connie Mack's campaign

Sen. Bill Nelson’s decision to cast a deciding vote for raising taxes on the wealthy won’t do much to fix the budget deficit, but it could help the campaign coffers of his Republican rival.

Less than a day after the 51-48 Senate vote, Republican Rep. Connie Mack’s campaign sent out a Thursday fundraising email pointing out that the Democrat had said he didn’t want to raise taxes on those earning more than $250,000.

Nelson said he preferred to eliminate the Bush-era tax cuts on the wealthy who earn $1 million or more.

“For weeks Bill Nelson has told Floridians he didn't support the president's plan. But then he cast the deciding vote for it,” Mack campaign manager Jeff Cohen wrote.

“It's the same old Bill Nelson we've come to expect,” said Cohen. “He talks like a moderate in Florida, but he votes like a LockStep Liberal with President Obama. Enough's enough.”

But Nelson’s spokesman, Dan McLaughlin, said Nelson has been consistent.

“He said he favored keeping the Bush-era tax cuts for those making up to a $1 million.   But that’s not what was before the Senate,” McLaughlin wrote. “He isn’t going to support raising taxes on everybody who makes under $250,000.”

McLaughlin pointed to previous votes in which Nelson favored keeping tax cuts on those who make less than $1 million and supported the current tax rates on those individuals making up to $200,000.

Wednesday’s Democratic Senate vote was more of a symbolic action than a likely predictor of Congressional tax policy because the measure won’t pass the Republican-controlled House. Republicans say the tax increase is a job killer. Democrats say it’s needed to help the budget.

Leading up the vote, national publications noted that the Senate vote put pressure on two embattled Democratic Senators: Nelson and Missouri’s Claire McCaskill. Nelson and Mack are essentially tied in Florida, according to the averages of the most-recent surveys of the race.

A number of national polls, which closely resemble Florida surveys, have indicated that voters favor raising taxes on those individuals who earn more than $200,000 and households that earn more than $250,000.

Still, raising taxes in an election year and bad economy isn’t a preferred course of action for politicians. Mason-Dixon pollster Brad Coker, who conducts surveys on behalf of The Miami Herald and its news partners, has repeatedly pointed out that, in Florida, “tax is a four letter word’ to the electorate, which has a high proportion of anti-tax wealthy retirees.

But Democrats needed to deliver a vote on the tax-the-wealthy issue for President Obama, who says the rich need to pay more of their fair share of taxes.

While Nelson’s camp believes voters will give him credit for being pragmatic and supporting a popular position, Mack’s spokesman David James said Nelson’s vote exposed a character flaw.

“He put his party above his principles,” James said.

Comments

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Denise

If there are 51 votes conceivably everyone's vote was the deciding vote. Way to be that little brat Cohen's mouthpiece for more of his tall tales as he pitches fits like a 5 year old.
That guy should be out of a job after the way he has been acting.
Poor judgement by Mack shows he is not fit to be a Statesman.
At least Nelson votes unlike Mack who skips class all to often leaving his constituents unrepresented.

Saving Florida's Future

Great Video: Where in the World is Connie Mack IV?
Hint he's not a work doing the people's business.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5LIhOBtj4Qw&feature=player_embedded

Geraldine Smith

what will you do for the people who is working but earn less then 20,000 dollars a years? why should I give you my vote? please explan what you can do.

Mike Cornelia

I know that Senator Bill Nelson’s decision to cast a deciding vote for raising taxes on the wealthy won’t do much to fix the budget deficit, but it could help the campaign coffers of his Republican rival. I hope this helps even a little bit because my business just received an IRS wage levy that could be a result of this deficit. I am still learning what a wage levy is, but I can already tell that I am going to need a professional to help me through it.

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