July 9th, 2012
03:29 PM ET
Washington (CNN) - President Barack Obama revitalized his push for holding down middle class tax rates Monday, calling on Congress to pass a one-year extension of the Bush-era tax cuts for people earning less than $250,000 a year.
In a White House statement delivered while people described as working Americans stood behind him, Obama said his proposal would provide the certainty of no tax increase next year for 98% of Americans.
Noting that Republicans seek to maintain all of the Bush tax cuts enacted in 2001 and 2003, Obama said both sides therefore agree on extending the lower rates for middle class families.
"Let's agree to do what we agree on, right?" Obama said to laughter and applause in the East Room. "That's what compromise is all about."
Facing a tough re-election fight in November against Republican challenger Mitt Romney, the Obama campaign seeks to frame the contest as a debate between the president's goal of restoring middle class opportunity versus GOP policies that it says would primarily benefit corporations and wealthy Americans.