The Senate made that advice more urgent last night when, for the third time it was unable to sign off on the tax extenders bill. That measure is what the proposed closing date of Sept. 30 was attached to.
Now, say Senate leaders, they're through with the tax bill, formally known as H.R. 4312 or the American Jobs and Closing Tax Loopholes Act of 2010 ... at least for a while. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev., says he's putting it on the back burner and will focus instead on a small business legislation.
How long can Capitol Hill put off the extenders bill? Well, it's not unusual for the House and Senate to be in session as the December holidays draw even closer. They can always make tax laws retroactive, which might be fine with them, but is a royal pain when you're trying to make effective tax plans.
However, since the extenders bill also contained unemployment benefits money and out-of-work voters are generally unhappy voters, Senators might give the tax bill another shot when they get back from the July 4 break.
Or they could pull the unemployment provisions out and consider them separately.
Or they could tack them onto the small business bill.
Reid says that's not an option, but as time passes and folks get angrier about not being able to find a job and not having any help from Uncle Sam in making ends meet, Congressional minds might change.
As for the expired tax breaks that the extenders bill was to remedy, lawmakers literally have months.