07/21/2010 10:15 pm ET Updated May 25, 2011

Kent Conrad, Senate Budget Chairman, Wants To Extend Bush Tax Cuts Without Paying For Them

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -- A fiscally conservative Democrat who chairs the U.S. Senate's budget committee on Wednesday said he supports extending all of the tax cuts that expire this year, including for the wealthy.

"The general rule of thumb would be you'd not want to do tax changes, tax increases ... until the recovery is on more solid ground," Senator Kent Conrad said in an interview with reporters outside the Senate chambers, adding he did not believe the recovery has come yet.

Conrad's comments are sympathetic with Republican arguments against raising taxes amid a fledgling economic recovery. They frame a debate gaining steam over whether stimulus to bolster the economy's recovery, or deficit reduction, should be the top policy priority.

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