WASHINGTON, June 9 The White House is
considering a temporary cut in payroll taxes that employers pay
on wages, an administration official said on Thursday, as
advisers to President Barack Obama discuss more ways to boost
A deal between Obama and congressional Republicans in
December included a reduction in taxes that workers have taken
out of their paychecks in 2011, but corporations did not get
the same break.
The official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, declined
to give details about other ideas the administration is
The struggling U.S. economy is the biggest challenge that
threatens Obama's hopes of being re-elected president in 2012.
The president, at a news conference with German Chancellor
Angela Merkel earlier this week, said his administration was
looking at ways to extend elements of the December deal.
"Some of the steps that we took during the lame duck
session -- the payroll tax, the extension of unemployment
insurance, ... the tax breaks for business investment in plants
and equipment -- all those things have helped," he said.
"And one of the things that I'm going to be interested in
exploring with the members of both parties in Congress is how
do we continue some of these policies to make sure that we get
this recovery up and running in a robust way."
(Reporting by Jeff Mason; Editing by Eric Beech)