Nightly News | December 18, 2011
>>> now to washington . a showdown over taxes in congress. when we left you last night, it looked like lawmakers had reached a deal on their way out of town. but tonight, it is a whole different story. our capitol hill correspondent kelly o'donnell joins us now with the details. kelly , here we go again, right.
>> reporter: indeed, lester. good evening. it is a big change tonight. the fate of the payroll tax cut and unemployment benefit extensions is up in the air all over again after senator and the white house thought they achieved a short-term ans, a two-month extension. but today john boehner said house republicans are not on board. washington 's holiday truth fell apart quickly. your paycheck could get smaller and unemployment benefits could run dry for many out of work a long time. after house speaker john boehner said this on "meet the press."
>> how can you do tax policy for two months?
>> reporter: boehner surprised washington today when he flat out rejected the senate's bipartisan solution that the president praised with relief on saturday.
>> congress has finally agreed to extend this middle class tax cut into next year.
>> reporter: it was an imperfect deal, hammered out with 89 senators from both parties, who agreed to extend the payroll tax cut and unemployment benefits for just two months. instead of the one year many expected.
>> it is pretty clear that i and our members oppose the senate bill .
>> reporter: boehner insists senators come back to washington and keep at it until a full year extension is reached.
>> i believe that two months is -- two months is kicking the can down the road.
>> reporter: democrats who left town were outraged. majority harry reid said, i would hate to think that speaker boehner is refusing to act on his bipartisan compromise because he is afraid it will actually pass. democrats said house republicans should not kill the bipartisan deal.
>> to play games with the middle class tax cut is very, very unfair. and we should make sure that every middle class family gets it.
>> reporter: the house had already passed its own version of a full-one year tax extension to keep the benefits going and they had some democrat support. he says there is still two weeks left in the year, enough time to reach a new compromise, but, lest, the practical path to getting that done is unclear tonight.
>> kelly , thank you.