Let me just, if I may, begin by making a few observations that reviews where we are. On Monday, the President, as you know, put forward to Speaker of the House Boehner a compromise proposal that would achieve significant long-term deficit reduction for our country; that would protect the middle class, protect seniors, and help our economy continue to grow and create jobs.
The difference between the proposal that the President put forward -- which, by every measure, demonstrates his willingness to come at least halfway to the Republicans -- and the proposal that Speaker Boehner had previously put forward was not that great. Unfortunately, the Speaker’s response to that proposal thus far has been to walk away from it and to pursue what he called “Plan B.”
Plan B, which is the only thing the House of Representatives, the Republicans in the House, are focused on right now is a multi-day exercise in futility at a time when we do not have the luxury of exercises in futility. The Speaker and his lieutenants have spent days trying to twist arms and wrangle votes within their own conference. It’s an exercise in Republican vote counting that will not result in anything for the American people. It cannot pass the Senate. The President would veto it if it got to his desk.
Moreover, as I think you know, plan B represents -- or would represent a major step backward in these discussions and a major step backward for the American people. Its proposals would give, on average, a tax cut for millionaires and billionaires of $50,000 -- hardly what the American people thought they were getting as a result of the debates and the election.
It would, in the name of protecting millionaires and billionaires, give people making between $200,000 and $500,000 a year, a $260 tax cut. So let’s be clear: You’re a millionaire or billionaire, you get John Boehner -- Speaker Boehner’s plan, you get a $50,000 tax cut. If you’re a wealthy American who makes between $200,000 and $500,000 a year, your reward for this exercise, if it were to become law, is a $260 tax cut. And of course, if you make less than that, you get less. And 25 million American families get a tax hike.
This is not what the American people want. This is not what the American people are looking for. This is -- would be a giant step backward. And it's the wrong way to go.
There is still an opportunity for compromise on a big deal, a deal that doesn't just resolve the so-called fiscal cliff, but reduces our deficits by, when taken together, $4 trillion over 10 years; that helps our economy grow and create jobs, put people back to work; that protects the middle class and seniors; that strengthens our entitlement programs. That's the deal the President put on the table. And again, by every measure, whether it's on revenue or spending cuts, it demonstrates his good-faith effort and his absolute factual willingness to come halfway towards the Republicans.
And even if you were to say -- if you're the House Republicans and you simply have no capacity to reach a compromise on a big deal, there is a fallback that has been languishing in the House of Representatives that would extend tax cuts to 98 percent of the American people, and has been languishing there for months and months, would give tax cuts to everyone making under $250,000. It would not give a $50,000 tax cut to millionaires and billionaires. It would not stick it to 25 million working American families. Unfortunately, that's where we are at this moment. I'll take your questions.
Thanks, Jay. A couple of topics. I'll start with where you started. We know that this bill if it passes the House is not going to be taken up by the Senate, according to Senator Reid. Is it possible -- I'm wondering what the President's next step here is. Is it possible for him to go to the Democrats in the Senate and just say, here's my plan -- you guys pass it and send it back?
Look, the President is not interested in, well, first of all, strategizing through the media. He is interested in resolving this in a way that's beneficial for the American people. There remains, even at this late date, an opportunity to do something big and good for the American people. But what we know about this exercise -- and we have seen this movie before -- is that when there was the opportunity for a compromise on something big and significant, the Republican leadership walked away and pursued something that was irrelevant to the rest of America, that is only a matter of internal House Republican politics. And it does nothing for the effort to achieve a bipartisan compromise. It produces nothing that will become law. It does nothing but bring us closer to the fiscal cliff. And it does nothing to resolve our long-term deficit challenges.
That is not what the American people expected to be the reaction of some of their leaders in the wake of this election. They expected, as the President said, that the message they sent on November 6th was that they wanted their leaders to work together, to compromise, to think about the greater good and to do big things in a manner that's balanced, that protects the middle class and helps the economy grow. They certainly didn't send the signal on November 6th that what they really wanted to see five days before Christmas was a bill become law that gives millionaires and billionaires a $50,000 tax cut on average. I guarantee you that is something you could not divine from the exit polls, because it does not exist.