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Obama uses public pressure to push GOP on tax cuts

December 22, 2011
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photo - President Barack Obama speaks during the news briefing at the White House, Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2011, in Washington. In a surprise appearance in the White House briefing room on Tuesday, the president said a "faction" of Republicans in the House is refusing to vote on a Senate bill that would extend a payroll tax cut for two months.  Photo by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS FILE
President Barack Obama speaks during the news briefing at the White House, Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2011, in Washington. In a surprise appearance in the White House briefing room on Tuesday, the president said a "faction" of Republicans in the House is refusing to vote on a Senate bill that would extend a payroll tax cut for two months. Photo by THE ASSOCIATED PRESS FILE 

WASHINGTON — President Barack Obama says a small faction of House Republicans are the only ones standing in the way of a deal to extend expiring payroll tax cuts.

Speaking at the White House, Obama says lawmakers must remember that the standoff over the cuts is not about politics: He says: "This is about the American people."

The president was flanked at the White House by several people who commented on Twitter about how they would be impacted if the tax cuts were not extended. Obama said it's time lawmakers started listening to the public's concerns.

Obama urged House Republicans to reconsider their opposition to a two-month extension of the cuts, a measure already approved overwhelmingly by the Senate. He says he believes lawmakers will reach a deal eventually, but they should do it sooner rather than later.

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