November 30th, 2011
04:10 PM ET
Scranton, Pennsylvania (CNN) - President Obama brought his two month-long jobs push to Scranton, Pennsylvania Wednesday, pleading with members of Congress back in Washington to extend the payroll tax holiday that he claims will save the average family $1,500 next year.
“Let’s be clear, if they vote no, your taxes go up,” Obama told an enthusiastic crowd at Scranton High School. “If they vote yes, you get a tax cut. Which way do you think Congress should vote?”
The payroll extension holiday is among the final components of the president’s larger jobs bill the Congress has yet to formally consider. Nearly every other measure Obama proposed in the $447 billion bill earlier this fall has been held up by Republicans - and in some cases Democrats - wary of increasing the country’s ballooning deficit or raising taxes on any income brackets.
The White House, that long suspected many of the president’s proposals would meet opposition in Congress, has jumped at the opportunity to campaign against Washington in the months before the presidential campaign kicks into full gear.
“Folks in Washington don’t seem to be getting the message,” the president also said in the 20 minute-speech in which he largely railed against congressional Republicans.
Unlike several of the president’s previous jobs-related measures, extending the payroll tax holiday appears to be attracting wider bipartisan support. But as Obama addressed a packed high school gym, Democrats and Republicans wrestled over how the tax break’s $200 billion plus tab would be paid for.
Democrats are said to be considering applying war savings from the drawdown of U.S. military efforts in Iraq and Afghanistan, though some budget experts consider that proposal to be disingenuous since those savings are going to be realized regardless.
Meanwhile, the president has proposed a tax increase on wages over $1 million to foot the bill, a proposal that has long been a non-starter with Republicans.
"What we’ve said is let’s see the folks whose incomes have risen fastest, let’s ask them to help out a little bit,” Obama said to cheers.
The White House on Tuesday didn't explicitly rule out a veto if Congress fails to pay for them. "We don't know what the endgame is yet," said spokesman Jay Carney during a press briefing.
CNNMoney’s Jeanne Sahadi contributed to this report