Dec 13, 2017 - 9:15am

Tax Reform Debate Update: 12/13/2017

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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

President Trump will deliver a speech on tax reform at the White House.

In the news

Washington Post: “Congressional Republicans in advanced talks to reduce the tax rate for top earners to 37 percent as part of final tax bill

Congressional Republicans are in advanced talks to lower the top tax rate for individuals from 39.6 percent to 37 percent as they finalize a massive $1.5 trillion tax package, said three people familiar with the negotiations.

The move follows complaints from wealthy taxpayers in New York and elsewhere that their taxes could go up under the legislation because of other changes it makes to the code.

The change, if finalized, would amount to a major tax cut for the wealthiest Americans. And it would be certain to spark a furious response from Democrats who are unanimously opposed to the legislation which they already have been casting as a giveaway to corporations and the rich.

The people insisted on anonymity to discuss private negotiations.

House and Senate negotiators are working to blend legislation passed separately by each chamber, with the aim of voting on a final package next week and sending it to President Trump to sign before Christmas.

Lawmakers are also settling on a corporate rate of 21 percent, higher than the 20 percent corporate rate passed by each chamber, but still a massive decrease from the current 35 percent corporate rate.

Washington Examiner: “Paul Ryan: We are 'so close' to passing tax reform

House Republican leaders predicted passage of a new tax reform law before Christmas, even though there are still dozens of differences between the House and Senate bills that have yet to be reconciled.

“Tax reform is what people need right now and I’m so thrilled that we are so close to the finish line,” House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., said Tuesday after meeting with fellow House Republicans privately at the party headquarters near the Capitol. “We are going to keep at it so that we deliver real tax relief before Christmas.”

House and Senate lawmakers are scheduled to meet formally on Wednesday to begin hashing out the differences between House-passed legislation and the Senate bill to reform the tax code.

Both bills are fundamentally similar but there are a handful of significant differences and many smaller ones that must be ironed out so identical bills can be considered in each chamber.

Tell Congress: The time for tax reform is now.

 
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