Voting nearly identically, the Senate twice failed to meet a 60-vote threshold necessary to move forward on both proposals. Meeting in a rare Saturday session after agreements fell through for a Friday vote, the results were widely expected. They were also somewhat premature, as the White House is still negotiating with congressional leaders on an alternative compromise proposal.Forbes reported on Friday that Congress basically has to act by December 15th. If they don't, then there's a good chance that we'll see a stock market sell-off as investors take their profits now under a more favorable tax rate. That gives Congress about ten days to cobble something together.
While I think it's likely that a compromise will be worked out, I will not be surprised if one isn't and the Bush Tax Cuts expire only to be remembered in the 2012 campaign season as the 2010 Obama Tax Hike.