One of the more conservative House Republicans, Rep. Tim Huelskamp, blasted the fiscal cliff deal passed by the Senate early Tuesday morning.
Huelskamp, a tea party favorite who was recently bounced from a key committee assignment for ostensibly not siding with House Speaker John Boehner enough, said the deal was an easy 'no' vote for him.
"It's three strikes in my book and I'll be voting no on this bill," he told CNN Tuesday morning, saying the legislation would impose a hardship on small businesses around the country and falls short of addressing the need for cuts in spending.
The measure is the first significant bipartisan tax increase since 1990, when former President George H.W. Bush violated his "read my lips" promise on taxes. It would raise an additional $620 billion over the coming decade when compared with revenues after tax cuts passed in 2001 and 2003, during the Bush administration.
But because those policies expired at midnight Monday, the measure is officially scored as a whopping $3.9 trillion tax cut over the next decade.
Last week, in an exclusive Newsmax TV interview,
Huelskamp, said he was “very pessimistic” that there will be a deal in Washington to significantly cut federal spending and begin dealing with the deficit.
The Kansas Republican also said he was “dissatisfied with both parties” for not taking action earlier to deal with the fiscal crisis.
And he warned that the conservative base could mount primary challenges against Republican incumbents who agree to raise taxes.
Huelskamp was first elected in 2010 and is a member of the Tea Party Caucus. He is one of four Republicans the GOP leadership removed from key committee posts for failure to toe the party line, a move the congressman calls “petty” and “vindictive.”
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