Ezra Klein engages in uncharacteristically evasive language.
A truthful way of phrasing the fight over taxes is that Republicans are fighting to stop a sharp tax increase on a small number of rich people and the White House is fighting to stop a tax increase on most everyone else. Or to put it still more bluntly, Democrats want to raise taxes on the rich, Republicans want to raise them on the poor and the middle class.
Considering that Klein himself acknowledges congressional Democrats are willing to sunset the payroll tax cuts, it's a tad unfair to engage in such sophistry, no? Allow me to rewrite the final sentence: "To put it still more bluntly, all Democrats want to hike taxes on the rich, some are fine with ending the payroll tax cuts, and Republicans are negotiating for dear life."
For the record, I'd just as soon abolish the payroll tax and fund SS and Medicare via general revenues, but that's about as likely as Howard Schultz convincing partisanship to leave Washington. But it's all just wordplay, no?