"The clock is ticking. The year is ending. It's really important, with tax legislation, for it to happen now," Pelosi told a news conference. "We're calling upon the Republican leadership in the House to bring this legislation to the floor next week. We believe that not doing that would be holding middle income tax cuts hostage to tax cuts for the rich."
Pelosi, D-Calif., said the Democrats would introduce a discharge petition next week if there is no announcement on scheduling action on the middle class tax cut.
"If it is not scheduled, then on Tuesday we will be introducing a discharge petition which you know with -- if we get 218 signatures, would bring the bill automatically to the floor," the Democratic leader said. "That would mean that we need some Republicans who support middle income tax cuts, to sign on with us."
A measure that would extend lower tax rates -- enacted when George W. Bush was president -- for taxpayers making less than $250,000 already passed the U.S. Senate.
During a visit to a toy manufacturing plant in Pennsylvania Friday, President Obama also urged House Republicans to approve the Senate-passed bill.