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Former Trump Enemy Ted Cruz Pushes 7 Major Trump Victories for Faith, Family and Life



Reported By Joshua Gill | June 7, 2018 at 2:42pm

URL of the original posting site: https://www.westernjournal.com/former-trump-enemy-ted-cruz-pushes-7-major-trump-victories-for-faith-family-and-life/

Republican Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas praised the Trump administration Thursday for seven major victories he said it accomplished “for faith, for family — for the values that we share.” Cruz made the remarks at the 2018 Road to Majority conference hosted by the Faith & Freedom Coalition.

He lauded the current presidential administration for making significant advances for the protection of religious liberty, individual rights concerning education and family, the defense of the unborn and foreign policy that reversed Obama-era deals.

“Let’s start with number one — judges,” Cruz said. “Principled, constitutionalist judges.”

Cruz mentioned the Trump administration’s victory concerning the nation’s courts with the appointment of Justice Neil Gorsuch, as well as the Supreme Court’s recent ruling in the Colorado bakery case.

“The so-called Colorado Civil Rights Commission demonstrated an antipathy, an animosity to faith that was visceral,” Cruz said. The Supreme Court, however, ruled that “you cannot discriminate against religious faith,” he added, instead of ruling they must be forced to violate their consciences.

“That is not narrow,” Cruz added. “That is a bedrock principle of our First Amendment and of our nation.”

“A second victory concerns life,” Cruz continued, lauding the Trump administration’s “return of the Mexico City rules,” which prevented the U.S. from providing foreign aid to fund abortions in other countries.

Other facets of the administration’s victory for life, according to Cruz, include the new Health and Human Services rules preventing tax funding for health clinics that provide abortions, as well as the dismissal of the litigation against the Little Sisters of the Poor and the repeal of the “abhorrent so-called contraceptive mandate in Obamacare.”

“Here’s a really good rule of thumb,” Cruz said. “If you’re litigating against nuns, you’ve probably done something wrong. It’s a wonderfully reliable checklist.”

The third victory for Cruz was the historic tax cut Congress passed in December, which he said provided more money for the majority of American citizens by “cutting taxes on small businesses, cutting taxes on farmers, cutting taxes on families.”

Cruz then advocated for the implementation of a flat tax and declared Americans “should abolish the IRS.”

The Trump administration scored a fourth victory, according to Cruz, with the repeal of the Obamacare individual mandate. He acknowledged, however, that the repeal of the Affordable Care Act was “the Republican Party’s biggest unkept promise” and urged the party to keep fighting for that outcome.

The final three victories Cruz said the Trump administration achieved for the nation and its values were the passage of “school choice” legislation, Trump’s decision to move the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem and Trump’s “right decision to withdraw from the disastrous Obama Iran nuclear deal.”

“Seven victories and more to come,” Cruz said in closing.

A version of this article appeared on The Daily Caller News Foundation website. Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

How Americans View Republican Policies Has Changed Drastically in Last 4 Months


Reported By Robert Donachie | April 17, 2018 at 8:56am

URL of the original posting site: https://www.westernjournal.com/how-americans-view-republican-policies-has-changed-drastically-in-last-4-months/

More American voters want the Republican party to remain in charge of the economy and tax policy, according to an NBC News/WSJ poll released Monday evening. The two media outlets found that 35 percent of Americans believe the Republican Party is better suited to handle the economy, compared with 28 percent who think Democrats have the better economic policies.

Roughly four months ago, Democrats had the upper hand. Thirty-five percent of American voters thought Democrats were the better choice in December — the same month Republicans passed the 2017 tax reform bill. The party now holds a slim 2 percent advantage over Democrats on the question of who has the better tax policy. Democrats had a 4 percentage point advantage in December.

Americans remain divided on whether or not the 2017 tax reform bill was a net-positive. Only 27 percent of Americans think the bill was a good idea, while 34 percent say they don’t know enough about the bill and 36 percent say it wasn’t a good idea.

A slim majority of Americans — 53 percent — think it is likely a negative because of expectations that it will greatly increase the federal deficit. Americans also believe the bill was a giveaway to the wealthy and major corporations.

Recent findings from government oversight officials work to back up Americans’ growing federal deficit concerns. The non-partisan Congressional Budget Office expects the Republican tax reform bill and 2018 congressional budget agreement will grow the economy over the coming years, but also add nearly $2 trillion to federal deficit over the next decade.

The CBO released analysis earlier in April detailing how the federal budget deficit will be $804 billion in 2018 and exceed $1 trillion in 2020. Publicly held U.S. debt will total $28.671 trillion by the end of 2028, amounting to over 96 percent of U.S. gross domestic product that year.

Republican tax cuts are expected, as leadership has repeatedly claimed, to grow the economy over the next two years. Real GDP will expand 3.3 percent in 2018 and 2.4 percent in 2019. Starting in 2020, those gains are expected to taper off. The CBO expects real GDP to grow 1.8 percent in 2020, continuing at an average annual rate of 1.7 percent from 2020-2026.

While the deficit remains a concern, the tax bill has shown and is expected to show some other net-benefits for the American people.  Hundreds of corporations and small businesses announced bonuses and wage increases following the bill’s signing last December, although many have decried the moves as simply a public relations stunt.

Americans filed their first tax returns under the new Republican tax plan Tuesday, a first litmus test for voters and politicians as to how effective the tax cuts will end up being. Tax cuts are also expected to bring nearly $2 trillion in capital held overseas back to the United States, according to a United Nations Conference on Trade and Developments report.

The U.N. expects the Republican tax law could lead to the repatriation of roughly $2 trillion in funds that American multinationals are holding overseas. U.N. analysts attribute their predictions to the dramatic cut to the U.S. corporate tax rate that took effect on Jan. 1, 2018.

A version of this article previously appeared on The Daily Caller News Foundation website. 

Economists Credit Trump For Booming Economy, Growth Will Continue In 2018 Thanks To Trump’s Tax Bill


Economists Credit Trump For Booming Economy, Growth Will Continue In 2018 Thanks To Trump's Tax Bill

CNBC’s economic survey released prior to Christmas showed that for the first time in over a decade a majority was optimistic about the economy, and there was a shift as to who should receive credit for it: Donald J. Trump. The economic growth for the fourth quarter was near four percent. Over 100 companies gave bonuses of at least $1,000 or more to over a million workers, even some part-timers got a piece of that action. The GOP tax bill, which the Left said was going to be a prelude to Armageddon, was exactly the opposite for the American worker, who the Democratic Party decided to bet against to try and undercut Trump. Over 90% of middle class Americans will be receiving a tax cut. The Democratic Party is going to have to explain that move, especially when this tax bill becomes more popular. 

As for the economy, economists said we should expect to see unemployment continue to go down and the economy to grow in 2018. Economists credit two things: President Trump and his tax bill. For Obama, his polices received good grades for providing financial stability, though they led to anemic economic growth and job creation  (via WSJ):

Economists surveyed by The Wall Street Journal say President Donald Trump has had generally positive effects on U.S. economic growth, hiring and the performance of the stock market during his first year in office.

The professional forecasters also predicted 2018 would see solid growth and a continued decline in the jobless rate. One factor: the tax cuts signed into law by Mr. Trump in December, which most economists say will boost the economy for several years at least.

More broadly, most forecasters surveyed by the Journal suggested Mr. Trump’s election deserves at least some credit for the economy’s recent strength.

Asked to rate Mr. Trump’s policies and actions to date, a majority of economists said he had been somewhat or strongly positive for job creation, gross domestic product growth and the stock market. Most also said he had been either neutral or positive for the country’s long-term growth trajectory, while his influence on financial stability was seen as largely neutral.

“There is definitely a sense in the business community that the president’s actions on taxes and regulations have led to a more pro-growth environment for them to operate,” said Chad Moutray, chief economist at the National Association of Manufacturers.

[…]

A year ago, President Barack Obama got mixed grades as he prepared to leave office after eight years. Most economists surveyed by the Journal in January 2017 saw his policies as positive for financial stability, positive or neutral for job creation, negative or neutral for GDP growth and negative for long-term potential growth.

Democrats are confident about the 2018 midterms. With the current numbers now, they should be—but we’re 10 months away from the midterms elections. Anything can happen.  

 

Utility Company Wants to Cut Rates for Millions After Trump Tax Cuts


By Randy DeSoto | January 11, 2018 at 11:13am

URL of the original posting site: https://www.westernjournalism.com/utility-company-wants-cut-rates-millions-customers-trump-tax-cuts/

Arizona’s largest utility company is seeking permission to cut rates to its more than one million customers as a result of the Republican tax reform bill passed last month. The public corporation joined one of New England largest providers — serving liberal Sen. Elizabeth Warren’s Massachusetts — in announcing it will do the same.

The news came as Walmart became another of a plethora of companies that will pay $1,000 bonuses and other benefits to its employees due to the windfall it will reap as a result of the corporate tax rate being lowered from 35 percent to 21 percent.

The Associated Press reported Tuesday that Arizona Power Service is seeking permission from regulators to cut bills by $119 million a year, effective on Feb. 1. Residential customers will see their monthly decrease by an average of $4.68 per month.

APS said more cuts could follow once the tax bill’s effects become more clear, according to the AP.

Meanwhile, the Massachusetts-based utility Eversource, which serves over 3 million customers, announced earlier this month it wants to lower its rates as well.

“We believe it’s important that our customers reap the benefit of a lower tax rate,” Eversource Massachusetts Electric Operations President Craig Hallstrom said in a statement, according to WBUR. “As a regulated power company our rates are based on our costs, including federal taxes, so if taxes are reduced ultimately costs are reduced and that benefits our customers.”

Eversource seeks to reduce its rates by $35.4 million in eastern Massachusetts and lower its recently approved increase for the western part of the state from $24.8 million to $16.5 million.

The Bay State’s Democrat Attorney General Maura Healey is calling on all utilities serving Massachusetts residents to do the same.

On Wednesday, Fox News host Bret Baier questioned Warren, an outspoken critic of the GOP tax plan and President Donald Trump, about the decision by Eversource to lower its rates.

“Good for them. I’m delighted to hear that,” she replied, but added that she would move to change the new tax law if Democrats take back Congress in November.

“You’ve got to take out the parts that are giveaways to big corporations that right now, the Republicans plan for hardworking families to eventually pay for,” Warren said. “It is a $1.5 trillion that the Republicans gave away to billionaires and to giant corporations.”

“I want those breaks to go to hardworking families, not to a bunch of rich folks,” she added.

At his first Cabinet meeting of 2018 on Wednesday, Trump touted the benefits Americans at all income levels are already experiencing as a result of the tax law, including some that were unforeseen.

“Since that tax cut was enacted more than one million workers have received a tax cut bonus. Something that frankly no one even thought about,” he said. “We just knew a lot of good things were going to happen.”

“I must say AT&T was the first one, and they did it, $1,000 per employee,” he added. “They have hundreds of thousands of employees. And many companies followed immediately thereafter. Millions of employees in this country are getting $1,000 and more in some cases. Tax bonuses because of the tax cuts.”

He also pointed out the plan specifically targets working Americans by nearly doubling the standard deduction, making the first $12,000 earned income tax-free for individuals, and the first $24,000 for married couples. Additionally, the law doubles the child income tax credit from $1,000 to $2,000.

On Thursday, Trump tweeted out the announcement by Walmart, the nation’s largest private employer, that it was raising its U.S. minimum wage to $11 per hour and issuing a bonus of up to $1,000 to employees as a result of the lower corporate tax rates.

The corporation also plans to expand maternity and parental leave benefits.

CBS Attempted Hit Job Against Tax Bill, But All 3 Families Discovered Something


Reported By Cillian Zeal | December 26, 2017 at 10:20pm

URL of the original posting site: https://conservativetribune.com/cbs-hit-job-tax-bill/

Before the Republican tax bill was passed, the media narrative focused on how it would only benefit the wealthy. Once it was passed (after a bit of procedural drama for good measure), that narrative went into overdrive. No matter what statistics or examples the GOP may have pointed the media toward, that was the story, and they were sticking to it. However, as our second president pointed out, facts are stubborn things — even more stubborn than media outlets are.

CBS found out the timeless sagacity of Mr. Adams’ advice the hard way.

After the tax bill passed, the network decided to run a segment that looked at how three separate American families from three different parts of the country would fare under the Republicans’ new tax plan. The original idea, one would assume, was to highlight the inequality therein.

Instead of the hit job one assumes some were looking for, however, CBS found that all three families ended up saving money.

The first profile was of Marcie George, a single mother who rents a home in Cary, North Carolina.

“It didn’t seem as they were going along like it would really affect someone like me,” George said.

An administrative assistant, George makes under $40,000 a year. “Financially, I struggle,” George said. “I live paycheck to paycheck. I make things work, I readjust and rearrange, but we do get by.”

Remember that we were told incessantly by the left that Ms. George and her child were going to be the kind of people who would get the shaft under the GOP tax plan. So, how did things end up for her? Pretty well, we’d say: over $1,300 saved, in part thanks to the child tax credit doubling.

Amber and Jason Edwards, a couple from Providence, Rhode Island, are slightly higher up the tax bracket than Ms. George is. Homeowners who are married without children, the educators took in a combined $150,000. While the Edwardses would pay taxes on $12,000 more of their income, according to CBS’ accountant, they would end up saving money based on the lower tax numbers, saving the family $650. They would also switch to the standard deduction, meaning a simpler return.

“Honestly, I’m a little surprised,” Amber Edwards said, turning to her husband. “What you had said, initially, you thought we were going to have a higher tax bill.”

And he was wrong.

Meanwhile, Melissa and Layne Lev of Fresno, California have three children and own their home and a small business. They too thought their taxes were going to be higher, although Melissa had trouble explaining why she thought this was. They make roughly $300,000. Even though they’re from a high-tax state — one where most individuals likely think that they’re going to get hit hard by the reduced state tax deductions — they ended up saving money too.

They’ll be receiving $13,000 in tax cuts, thanks to receiving child tax credits and not paying the alternative minimum tax.

Can you imagine the tears in the CBS newsroom as the results poured in? It’s like a mini-election night all over again!

So, yes, as much as this is apparently just a tax cut for the rich, everyone — the Georges, the Edwardses and the Levs — will be seeing money back thanks to tax reform. And these are hardly modern-day Vanderbilts, either, meaning this is money that’s going to be going directly back into the economy.

Talk about a Christmas present for everybody. Unless you’re part of the Democrat caucus, of course.

H/T PJ Media

WSJ: The Tax Cuts Will Grow the Economy by Much More than Expected


Mark Wilson/Getty Images

Reported by John Carney | 18 Dec 2017

URL of the original posting site: http://www.breitbart.com/big-government/2017/12/18/wsj-the-tax-cuts-will-grow-the-economy-by-much-more-than-expected/

Tax cuts are going to grow the economy by much more than expected.

That’s the verdict of the Wall Street Journal‘s prestigious “Heard on the Street” column. Importantly, Heard on the Street is run by the news side of the WSJ, not its tax-cut loving editorial page. So there’s no particular pro-tax cut or pro-Republican bias at work here.

Justin Lahart of Heard writes:

There were several surprises for investors when Republicans unveiled their final tax bill Friday, but the most significant is that they add up to a bigger boost to economic growth next year.

The bigger stimulus could fundamentally change how the market behaves in 2018. Sales and profits will be stronger than most investors expect. But with the unemployment rate low, wage pressures will mount faster, and inflation should pick up more. If the tax plan passes, as seems likely, it could lead the Federal Reserve to raise rates faster, putting the bond market at risk.

The tax plan was always expected to juice the economy, but the Senate version, which passed after the House approved its bill, had relatively modest short-term stimulus. While the stock market kept rising in anticipation of a cut, the bond market hardly budged. The bill unveiled Friday front-loaded more than $200 billion in stimulus for next year. Economists had been penciling in a boost of about a third of a percentage point next year. Now that is looking way low.

Some of the pro-growth changes include eliminating any delay to the corporate tax cuts, lowering of the top individual rate, lowering rates for most taxpayers, and increasing the child tax credit. The latter is particularly important because middle-class households are “more likely to spend extra income than the rich.”

The tax bill could increase GDP by 1.3 percent, Lahart writes.

That’s an additional full percentage point gain from what economists had been expecting based on earlier bills.

(Full disclosure: I used to work for Heard on the Street and consider Lahart a personal friend. He’s had me over to his apartment for fish.)

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The House Has Passed More Bills In 10 Months Of Trump Than Obama, Bush or Clinton


Reported By Jack Davis | November 14, 2017 at 8:10am

URL of the original posting site: https://www.westernjournalism.com/house-passed-bills-10-months-trump-obama-bush-clinton/?

Productivity came to Washington along with President Donald Trump, according to House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif. In a Monday Facebook post, McCarthy noted that in Trump’s first few months in office, more bills have passed the House than under any of the previous four presidents.

“Over 400 bills have passed the House during Donald J. Trump’s first 10 months. That’s more than under Obama, Bush, or Clinton,” he posted.

McCarthy displayed a graph that showed the average numbers of bills passed in the first 10 months of a presidency going back to President George H.W. Bush was 306. Under the Trump administration, the House has passed 407, 33 percent above the average.

According to McCarthy, the number of bills passed in the first 10 months under past administrations were:

President Barack Obama, 353;

President George W. Bush, 215;

President Bill Clinton, 263; and

President George H.W. Bush, 292.

Earlier this fall, McCarthy said the House needs help from the Senate to translate their achievements into achievements for the American people.

“Think what we’ve been able to achieve, the number of bills,” he said in September, according to Newsmax. “More so than any modern Congress you had in the first year of a new presidency: 16 human trafficking bills, 16 congressional review acts, 14 signed into law. In the history of America, only one other Congress has ever done one of those.”

“The last time a Republican majority did that, the iPhone wasn’t invented,” he said. “We need a little help on the other chamber.”

While McCarthy appeared pleased by the output of the current administration, his excitement grew when referencing the GOP tax plan.

The bill is expected to pass the House this week.

“It brings the lowest rate for small business, the lowest it has been in 80 years,” said McCarthy, who believes the bill will help all Americans. “That is what creates new jobs. That is what we have to continue to work on.”

McCarthy criticized Democrat opposition to the bill, citing America’s grew sluggish under the Obama administration.

“You know the last eight years under Barack Obama, if you take his very best growth year, that is actually lower than the worst year under Bill Clinton. We have got to get America moving again.”

“Get America moving again” seems to be the theme, as Trump wraps up his tour of Asia, and returns to the U.S.

He is expected to meet with House Republicans on Thursday in an effort to ensure passage of the legislation, which is one of Trump’s top priorities.

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Tax Reform News


Senate to delay corporate tax cut, breaking with Trump and House

Senate Republicans plan to propose delaying a cut in the corporate tax rate until 2019, according to a GOP senator.

Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.) also said the individual mandate will not be repealed as part of the Senate tax overhaul proposal expected to be released Thursday.

The proposal breaks with President Trump’s preference that a corporate tax cut be put in place immediately. The House’s tax-reform legislation proposes lowering the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 20 percent in 2018.

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Other big changes from the House version include adding back in a deduction for medical expenses and a full repeal of state and local tax deductions.

Republicans are seeking to get a bill to President Trump’s desk by Christmas.

A House panel could report its version out of committee on Thursday, and that measure could get a vote in the full chamber next week.

The GOP-written legislation is not likely to win over any Democrats, who blast it as a giveaway to the rich and object to cutbacks in breaks used by the middle class. Republicans say their standard deduction increase and tax rate cuts will make up the difference.

This story has been updated.

Blue Dog Democrats taking hard line on GOP tax bill

Blue Dog Democrats taking hard line on GOP tax bill | © Greg Nash

Blue Dog Democrats are lining up in firm opposition to the Republicans’ tax code overhaul, hoping that Tuesday’s election results will force GOP leaders to reach across the aisle for a bipartisan alternative.

The Blue Dogs had initially expressed an eagerness to join Republicans in the push for sweeping tax reform, which stands among the GOP’s top priorities. But the fiscally minded Democrats are quickly racing away from the GOP proposal, largely over projections the bill will hike taxes on millions of middle-class families and lead to a spike in deficit spending.

“Let me just be quite honest,” said Rep. David Scott, a Georgia Blue Dog. “There is no way I can support it.” 

Behind Rep. Kevin Brady (R-Texas), chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, the Republicans are pressing forward this week with the marathon markup of their partisan tax proposal. The Republicans, desperate for a major legislative victory following the embarrassing demise of ObamaCare repeal earlier in the year, are scrambling to move the tax bill through the House by Thanksgiving and to President Trump’s desk by Christmas.

But overhauling the nation’s convoluted tax structure is a colossal task — there are reasons Congress hasn’t enacted major tax reforms since the Reagan administration — and the Republicans are facing stiff headwinds from a long list of opponents, including small business groups, realtors, universities and deficit hawks, not to mention Democrats united against the plan.

The blowback has made even some Republicans skeptical they can enact the conservative tax overhaul that’s long been at the top of Speaker Paul Ryan’s (R-Wis.) wish list.

With that in mind, the Blue Dogs sense an opening for bipartisan compromise, and they’re feeling empowered by Tuesday’s elections, which saw lopsided Democratic victories in state and local contests across the country.

“It shows that we’ve got juice, and if they want to maintain their majority — or at least come close to that in the next cycle — they’re going to have to work with Democrats like us,” said Rep. Kurt Schrader, an Oregon Blue Dog.

“The mood of the country’s moving away from them. They’ve not shown that they can get anything done. People are tired of that; they want someone who’s going to work across the aisle, someone who can solve problems.”

Scott agreed, saying the elections should stand as “a wake-up call” for both parties.

“It’s a powerful lesson, and it puts a greater pep in the step of Democrats,” he added. “But we’ve got to be willing to reach across the aisle.”

The Blue Dogs have dwindled in numbers since a rout in 2010, and there are now fewer than 20 members.

And it’s not even clear that Republicans are ready to reach across the aisle simply based on Tuesday’s results. Just a handful of GOP members have come out against the tax bill thus far, and many Republicans expect an easy vote on the House floor next week.

And not all Democrats are so eager to work with the Republicans on the tax plan, which was written with no help from the minority party. Indeed, in the eyes of many Democrats, Tuesday’s election trouncing was largely a reflection of the Republicans’ failure to enact any of their big campaign promises, despite controlling all the levers of power in Washington.

With that in mind, many Democrats see political gold in uniting to deny the Republicans a victory on tax reform, whatever form it assumes.

“The Democratic Party is going to be united,” Rep. Steny Hoyer (Md.), the Democratic whip, told reporters Tuesday. “If we held the vote today, we would be united. And I expect overwhelming Democratic opposition to a bill that advantages greatly the wealthiest in America and leaves the middle class behind.”

It remains unclear if the Republicans will need any Democratic votes to pass a tax package, with only several members peeling off thus far. And although they’ve sprinkled notions of seeking bipartisanship, Republicans wrote the bill themselves and Democrats say they are jamming it through with no hearings.

And if the criticism coming from the Blue Dogs this week is any indication, the GOP bill needs plenty of work if it’s to win the Democrats’ support.

“It will increase the taxes on the middle class and give extraordinary tax cuts to the wealthiest people,” said Scott. “And you and I both know that it is the middle class, it is the lower-income [people] … that will spend the money.

“Giving these tax cuts to the wealthy, they hoard it.”

Echoing Scott, Rep. Sanford Bishop, another Georgia Blue Dog, ticked off a long list of deductions eliminated under the GOP plan he said Democrats can’t support. As one example, “it seems awfully ridiculous for a school teacher not to be able to deduct the pens and the pencils and the papers that she purchases for her children,” he said, “but a corporation can deduct all of the pens and supplies that they provide to their employees.”

The Blue Dogs also oppose new deficit spending proposed under the GOP’s plan — a figure that would reach $1.7 trillion over the next decade, the Congressional Budget Office estimated Wednesday.

“It’s complete hypocrisy that Republicans are ignoring that at this point,” Schrader said. “You’d have to close that hole dramatically.”

But Schrader also praised certain elements of the Republican plan, and predicted the GOP was going to need their help.

“They’re going to be desperate,” he added.

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House passes budget, paving way for tax reform


Reported

House passes budget, paving way for tax reform

 

The House passed its 2018 budget resolution Thursday in a party-line vote that represents a step toward its goal of sending tax-reform legislation to President Trump. In a 219-206 vote, lawmakers approved a budget resolution for 2018 that sets up a process for shielding the GOP tax bill from a filibuster in the Senate.

A total of 18 Republicans voted against the resolution, along with all the Democrats who were present.

GOP lawmakers hailed the vote as meaningful because of the tax measure.

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“We haven’t reformed this tax system since 1986. We need to pass this budget so we can help bring more jobs, fairer taxes and bigger paychecks for people across this country,” Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) said during House floor debate.

Democrats lambasted it for the same reason.

“This budget isn’t about conservative policy or reducing the size of our debt and deficits. It’s not even about American families. This budget is about one thing — using budget reconciliation to ram through giant tax giveaways to the wealthy and big corporations — and to do it without bipartisan support,” said Rep. John Yarmuth (D-Ky.), the ranking member of the House Budget Committee.

The budget reconciliation rules would allow Republicans in the Senate to pass tax reform without any Democratic votes, though Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) can only afford two defections. Republicans used the same strategy for ObamaCare repeal but failed, and are hoping for a better outcome on taxes.

Yet there are already signs of trouble, with some Republicans questioning whether the tax proposal would add too much to the deficit, and others balking at plans to eliminate a deduction for state and local taxes. The tax plan is now estimated to add $1.5 trillion to the deficit over a decade, but that figure would grow if the state and local tax deduction is not eliminated.

Republicans have yet to secure a major legislative win despite having unified control of government. They hope to secure a tax win by the end of the year, which is an ambitious timeline.

The GOP tax reform framework unveiled last week would cut the top tax rate for the wealthy and lower taxes for businesses. The proposal would consolidate the current seven individual tax brackets into three, with rates of 12 percent, 25 percent and 35 percent. Committees may choose to establish a fourth rate above 35 percent for the wealthiest Americans. The current top individual rate is 39.6 percent. 

House Republicans are far behind schedule in passing the budget, which is normally approved in the spring. Thursday’s vote comes five days into the new fiscal year, and a month after the House passed all 12 of its spending bills for 2018. 

The government is operating under a temporary spending measure that runs out on December 8. Congress and Trump must strike a new deal to prevent a shutdown after that deadline. The House budget is in many ways an opening bid in that battle. 

Like the already-passed spending bills, it would increase defense spending by $72 billion, and cut nondefense spending by $5 billion. The Senate’s plan keeps overall funding levels steady.

It also includes plans for trillions of dollars in spending cuts over a decade, including from programs such as Medicare and Medicaid, but does include enforcement mechanisms to enact those plans. The budget outline, for example, assumes the adoption of a House-passed ObamaCare repeal bill that has not advanced.

The House budget leaves no room for tax reform to add to the deficit. Instead, it provides instructions for $203 billion in spending cuts from welfare programs in areas such as nutritional assistance and education. 

To unlock the reconciliation rules for tax reform, lawmakers will likely have to go to conference to sort out differences with the Senate’s budget resolution. The upper chamber’s version is being marked up in committee Thursday and is expected to move to the Senate floor in two weeks. 

The Senate budget carves out $1.5 trillion in possible tax cuts for the reform effort, a figure the House is expected to agree to. The Senate is not expected to accept the $203 billion in mandatory cuts from the House budget, but House Budget Committee Chairman Diane Black (R-Tenn.) said she will fight to keep them in. 

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