US may skirt 'fiscal cliff' but faces higher taxes | General Headlines | Comcast A last-ditch tax deal in the Senate might let the U.S. economy escape the worst of the so-called fiscal cliff and avoid going back into recession. But even if the House goes along, the tax increases likely coming in 2013 will dent economic growth anyway. The biggest hit to the economy is expected to come from the end of a two-year Social Security tax cut. The so-called payroll tax is scheduled to bounce back up to 6.2 percent from 4.2 percent in 2011 and 2012, amounting to a $1,000 tax increase for someone earning $50,000 a year. "Even with this deal, fiscal policy will still be a net drag on economic growth," Vitner said. "The expiration of the payroll tax holiday will reduce after-tax income for all workers and hit lower to middle income families the hardest." Obama has screwed the middleclass again.