POLITICAL NOTEBOOK: Leaders praise tax compromise

The last-minute vote to extend the Bush tax cuts had the backing of Gwinnett’s Democratic representative, too.

U.S. Rep. Hank Johnson voted for the Middle Class Tax Relief Act of 2010, which extends tax cuts, unemployment insurance and investments in small businesses and green energy.

“Too many Americans are struggling and out of work for us to raise taxes on the middle class, and despite its flaws the compromise will provide critical additional stimulus,” said Johnson. “President Obama and Democrats secured extension of unemployment insurance, middle class tax cuts, small business tax credits, and tax breaks for parents with kids in college. That is no small feat. I oppose the GOP’s cherished cause of tax cuts for top earners, but further investment in economic recovery is too important to withhold my support.”

Sen. Johnny Isakson said he’s glad Democrats compromised, too, this time for abandoning a $1.1 trillion omnibus bill and instead keeping government spending at current levels until early next year.

“The message from the voters in November was loud and clear: We must get our fiscal house in order and stop the out-of-control federal spending,” Isakson said. “I philosophically disagree with the concept of omnibus spending bills. I strongly believe each one of the 12 appropriation bills deserves scrutiny and a thorough debate. A short-term continuing resolution is the right thing to do.”

Chambliss gets chairmanship

Georgia’s other U.S. Senator, Saxby Chambliss received a key leadership role last week.

The Moultrie man will serve as co-chair of the U.S. Senate Aerospace Caucus.

“Ensuring a strong aerospace industry is critical to our national defense,” said Chambliss. “Sens. (Patty) Murray (of Washington) and (Missouri’s Kit) Bond have been steadfast advocates on behalf of the American aerospace industry, and I’m pleased to join the efforts they have started. I look forward to advancing the priorities of this caucus in the 112th Congress.”

Political Notebook appears in the Thursday and Sunday editions of the Gwinnett Daily Post.

Camie Young can be reached via e-mail at camie.young@gwinnettdailypost.com.