Members of a conservative group within the U.S. House say they will fight any House Republicans who support raising taxes to avoid the so-called fiscal cliff.
Speaking with reporters on Capitol Hill, members of the Republican Study Committee said Wednesday they could be open to closing tax loopholes or doing away with some deductions but they will oppose any compromise with congressional Democrats or the White House that includes tax increase, The Wall Street Journal reported.
More than half of all House Republicans are members of the Republican Study Committee.
Members of the group who spoke Wednesday said, as Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, said last week, they would accept higher revenues only as a byproduct of stronger economic growth, or as part of tax or regulatory reform.
Rep. Paul Labrador, R-Idaho, said the group would "fight any member of our conference that decides that this is a good time to raise taxes."
"But if we can talk about ways to get the economy growing, ways to get [U.S. gross domestic product] higher, we can do that through tax reform and regulatory reform," he said.
RSC head Rep. Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, said, "If it's long term revenue that results from economic growth that's fine, but if it's revenues this year by increasing the tax burden, then frankly that's a real problem."
The fiscal cliff is the name given to a feared economic downturn that could result automatic spending cuts are permitted to kick in at the end of 2012, and if tax breaks enacted during the administration of former President George W. Bush -- and extended for one year in a 2011 compromise between the White House and congressional Republicans -- are allowed to expire as scheduled at the end of the year.
President Barack Obama will push a $1.6 trillion plan to hike taxes for the rich and corporations in talks on averting the looming fiscal cliff, White House press secretary Jay Carney said.
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