Nov 15, 2017 - 9:00am

Tax Reform Debate Update: 11/15/2017

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The Internal Revenue Service headquarters in Washington, D.C.
The Internal Revenue Service headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Here is your daily round-up of news and analysis to keep you informed as tax reform works its way through Congress.

What’s happening today

The Senate tax bill markup continues in the Finance Committee.

In the news

CNBC: “House GOP moving full speed to get tax reform done by year-end

House Republicans will vote on their tax reform bill on Thursday, aiming to take the most concrete step yet toward overhauling the American tax system.

House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif., confirmed the plan to reporters on Tuesday. GOP leaders believe they can pass the bill this week, despite lingering resistance from some Republicans.

President Donald Trump plans to go to Capitol Hill on Thursday to make the case for tax cuts before the vote.

The GOP aims to pass a plan to chop tax rates for businesses and individuals by the end of the year to fulfill a key campaign promise. Lawmakers argue that changing the tax code will spark economic growth and boost job creation and wages.

This week, the Senate is marking up, or debating and amending, its version. The chamber wants to approve the bill after Thanksgiving.

CNN: “Tax reform: It's now or never, says White House adviser Gary Cohn"

On Tuesday, the White House director of the National Economic Council, Gary Cohn, underscored the urgency to complete a tax overhaul so that Congress can tackle other top priorities next month.

"December is going to get very, very crowded," Cohn said speaking at The Wall Street Journal's CEO Council conference.

Earlier this year, lawmakers punted on a number of critical issues until the first and second week of December, including a possible government shutdown. Congress has until midnight on December 8 to pass a spending bill, or risk the federal government running out of money.

"It's really important to get it done," Cohn stressed. "We've gotta get taxes done this year."

Investor’s Business Daily: “No, Republican Tax Cuts Won't Explode The Deficit"

After eight years of silence during President Obama eight years in office, which saw deficits average $910 billion a year and the national debt explode by $9.3 trillion, Democrats are suddenly fretting about deficits. If only their concern were genuine and not a cynical attempt to derail much-needed tax reform.

The Republican plan is a "deficit-busting tax cut to benefit the wealthiest Republicans," says Senate Minority Leader Charles Schumer. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi warns that it would "take us so deeply into debt … it will necessitate a trillion dollars being cut out of Medicaid."

Various other Democrats say the tax cuts would "blow a massive hole" in the budget, while chastising Republicans for suddenly not caring about deficits.

Let's leave aside the fact that Democrats didn't raise a peep of protest during the Obama years, when deficits topped $1 trillion four years in a row, nor did they complain about the near doubling of the nation's debt.

The fact is that critics of the GOP tax plan are just plain wrong to pin the blame for future deficits on tax cuts.

Tell Congress: The time to tax reform is now.

 
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