WASHINGTON, May 10 — The House of Representatives approved a $69 billion bill to extend President Bush's tax cuts for two more years this afternoon, sending the measure to the Senate, where passage is expected by Thursday.
The House vote was 244 to 185, with nearly all Republicans voting in favor. Although most Democrats voted no, more than a dozen voted in favor. The measure also temporarily blocks a big jump in the alternative minimum tax.
The stage for this afternoon's vote was set on Tuesday, when Republicans from the House and Senate reached agreement on a tax package. Assuming the package clears the Senate, which seems virtually certain, it will lock in one of Mr. Bush's signature tax cuts through 2010 and give Republicans a victory at a time when most of their other efforts have stalled.
But the bill falls far short of Mr. Bush's original goal, which was to make permanent all of his major tax cuts from 2001 and 2003. Nor did Republican leaders work out their differences on a separate measure that would extend scores of other tax cuts that expired at the end of last year.
Of course they're bankrupting the country.