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Competing sequester-replacement bills are expected to come to the Senate floor today, including Democratic-backed legislation that would raise tax revenues and a Republican measure that could exempt revenue increases altogether. The prospects for both appear dim, lawmakers say. The Democratic bill (S. 388) would allow for a delay of the automatic, across-the-board spending cuts. It includes a surtax on high-income households, on top of adding taxes on tar sands oil and ending tax deductions for relocating U.S. businesses abroad. In the House, Rep. Tiberi, a senior member of the House Ways and Means Committee, downplays the severity of the budget cuts and rejects the notion that Republicans will eventually back down and agree to tax hikes.
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