WASHINGTON, Nov. 14 (UPI) -- A top White House adviser and a leading Republican senator left room for compromise on tax rates Sunday.
On "Fox News Sunday," David Axelrod and Sen. Jim DeMint, R-S.C., were asked about making the Bush tax cuts permanent for those earning less than $250,000 per year while extending them for the richest for a few years.
Axelrod said, "We have to extend these middle class tax cuts -- absolutely have to do that. We should do that permanently."
President Barack Obama, he said, "feels we have to proceed in a way that's fiscally responsible, and we just can't afford to borrow another $700 billion for tax cuts that almost entirely are going to go to millionaires and billionaires."
But he did not rule out a temporary extension for all taxpayers.
DeMint said, "I don't think there's any room to negotiate on raising taxes, particularly on smaller businesses."
But he added, "If the president wants to compromise on a two- or three-year extension ... he is the president, so we'll work with him on that."
DeMint also said the Republican leadership "has gotten the message. They're going to push for an earmark ban."