WASHINGTON (AP) -- The Senate has rejected a Democratic bill providing tax breaks to companies that enlarge their payrolls or make major purchases or plant improvements.
The vote was 53-44, seven short of the 60 votes required to overcome GOP procedural hurdles.
The roll call came after senators voted 73-24 against a Republican version that would have provided a tax deduction to U.S. companies with fewer than 500 employees.
The votes were being held during a campaign season in which neither party wants to give ground in the struggle over how best to spark the economy and for whom to cut taxes.
The Democratic measure would give 10 percent tax credits, up to $500,000, for the amount by which a company's 2012 payroll exceeds last year's. It would cover new hires or raises for existing workers.