clear
Sunday November 19th, 2017 7:07PM
8:34AM ( 10 hours ago ) Weather Alert

Senate bill to unwrap with tax cuts, end to local deduction

By The Associated Press
Related Articles
  Contact Editor

WASHINGTON (AP) — Amid intense political pressure to achieve results, Senate Republicans prepared to unveil sweeping tax legislation Thursday that would usher in billions in cuts for people and corporations and repeal the federal deduction for state and local taxes.

On the other side of the Capitol, the House Republican tax-writing committee was pushing to approve its own measure after a dayslong amendment session and last-minute changes by its primary author.

The feverish efforts by Republicans in both chambers were aimed at fulfilling a self-imposed deadline to get legislation out of the House and Senate before Thanksgiving, so that the period between Thanksgiving and Christmas could be devoted to reconciling the two versions. But the Senate already seemed unlikely to meet that deadline because of complex rules governing how it must consider the tax bill.

The bills represent the first major reshaping of the U.S. tax code in three decades, and the effort is the top priority for President Donald Trump and Republicans who've failed to deliver any major legislation this year despite controlling the House, Senate and the White House.

Democrats are angrily opposed to the partisan rewrite, and the drubbing the GOP took in elections in Virginia, New Jersey and elsewhere Tuesday underscored the political peril of failing to deliver — but also the risk to Republicans in pushing ahead with legislation that polls poorly.

Top administration officials including Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin met privately with GOP senators late Wednesday as Senate tax writers put finishing touches on their bill.

Even as Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, prepared to take the wraps off the new Senate, some elements appeared in flux.

As Republican leaders hunted for ways to pay for their tax cuts, Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., said the Senate measure would fully eliminate the deduction people can take for state and local property, income and sales taxes. The House version would retain the deduction only for property taxes and cap that at $10,000, drawing opposition from GOP lawmakers from states with high local taxes like New York and New Jersey.

Perdue said the Senate plan would compress the current seven personal income tax brackets down to four. On Tuesday, two Republicans had said the bill would retain the seven brackets but cautioned that changes were possible.

Hatch's plan was likely to include a one-year delay in its reduction in the corporate tax rate, which will be permanent, said a GOP aide who spoke on condition of anonymity to discuss internal deliberations. Shrinking that rate to 20 percent from its current 35 percent has been a primary goal of Trump and the business community, and delaying that reduction would help contain the bill's costs.

In the House, Ways and Means Committee Chair Rep. Kevin Brady was making last-minute changes before the panel votes later Thursday to deliver it to the full House. Brady's changes presumably are being made to meet the $1.5 trillion maximum that the bill is allowed to add to the $20 trillion deficit. A preliminary estimate by Congress' nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation said the House measure as currently written would add $74 billion more to 10-year deficits than allowed.

With his revisions, Brady, R-Texas, also likely is looking to nail down Republican votes so the House can approve the legislation soon. Democrats are certain to uniformly oppose it.

"We're excited, everything looks good," Mnuchin told reporters after he and chief White House economic adviser Gary Cohn met with Republicans on Hatch's panel in the Capitol late Wednesday.

The tax bill must deepen federal deficits by no more than $1.5 trillion over the coming decade. If Republicans don't meet that, the measure would be vulnerable to a bill-killing Senate filibuster by Democrats that GOP senators lack the votes to block. It also cannot add to red ink beyond the first 10 years without facing the same fate.

Republican leaders' goal is for Congress to send legislation melding both House and Senate versions to Trump by Christmas, in hopes of protecting their congressional majorities in next year's elections.

House Speaker Paul Ryan noted Wednesday that Tuesday's sobering election results "just puts more pressure on making sure we follow through" on the party's drive to overhaul the tax code.

Republicans have discussed repealing Obama's individual mandate in their tax legislation to raise more money to pay for tax cuts. That mandate requires most people to buy coverage or face a fine.

But the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office lowered its estimate Wednesday for how much money repealing that requirement would save from $416 billion over a decade to $338 billion. Repeal would save money because without being forced to get coverage, fewer people would sign up for Medicaid or buy federally subsidized private insurance.

___

Associated Press writers Andrew Taylor and Alan Fram contributed to this report.

  • Associated Categories: U.S. News, Associated Press (AP), AP National News, AP Online National News, Top U.S. News short headlines, Top General short headlines, AP Online Headlines - Washington, AP Online Congress News, AP Elections, General House Election News, AP Business, AP Business - Personal Finance
© Copyright 2017 AccessWDUN.com
All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without permission.
Senate bill to unwrap with tax cuts, end to local deduction
The Senate version of the Republicans' high-stakes tax overhaul is set to be unveiled with billions in tax cuts for people and corporations and repeal of the federal deduction for state and local taxes.
3:29AM ( 5 minutes ago )
Democrats see wins as momentum for 2018 state elections
Democrats this week began to reverse the big gains Republicans have made in state legislative chambers since 2010
3:28AM ( 6 minutes ago )
Democratic wins: Start of anti-Trump surge or 'not so fast?'
Democrats celebrate their election wins _ and immediately turn their attention to next year and hopes for taking control of the U.S. House.
3:25AM ( 9 minutes ago )
Associated Press (AP)
Trump optimistic on trade, North Korea after China talks
President Donald Trump criticizes "very one-sided and unfair" trade relationship between the U.S. and China, but says he doesn't blame the country for taking advantage of the U.S. in the past.
2:50AM ( 44 minutes ago )
The Latest: Xi expresses hope for healthy relations with US
Chinese Xi Jinping has expressed hope that his country and the U.S. can maintain a "healthy, stable and growing" relationship.
1:16AM ( 2 hours ago )
Trump criticizes 'one-sided' Chinese trade deals
President Donald Trump criticizes "very one-sided and unfair" trade relationship between the U.S. and China, but says he doesn't blame the country for taking advantage of the U.S. in the past.
12:55AM ( 2 hours ago )
AP Online Headlines - Washington
The Latest: Texas executes Mexican citizen for 1997 slaying
A Mexican citizen on death row in Texas has been executed for the slaying of his 16-year-old cousin.
11:37PM ( 3 hours ago )
After rough night, top Trump backers differ on path forward
Some of Donald Trump's fiercest advocates are offering different approaches for the Republican Party's way forward after some tough losses Tuesday
10:02PM ( 5 hours ago )
Ralph Northam's Virginia win is a balm for jittery Democrats
The next governors of Virginia and New Jersey say their victories are a repudiation of Trump administration positions and policies
9:08PM ( 6 hours ago )
AP Online Congress News
Christopher Plummer to replace Kevin Spacey in Getty film
Kevin Spacey is getting cut out of Ridley Scott's finished film "All the Money in the World" and replaced by Christopher Plummer
2:31AM ( 1 hour ago )
Talks on Pacific Rim trade pact minus US at regional summit
Talks on Pacific Rim trade pact minus US as leaders gather for APEC summit
2:25AM ( 1 hour ago )
Asia shares mixed as investors watch Trump's China visit
Asian shares were mixed Thursday as Japan's stock benchmark failed to sustain a strong rally and investors monitored President Donald Trump's visit to Beijing
1:52AM ( 1 hour ago )
AP Business
Democrats see wins as momentum for 2018 state elections
Democrats this week began to reverse the big gains Republicans have made in state legislative chambers since 2010
3:28AM ( 6 minutes ago )
Democratic wins: Start of anti-Trump surge or 'not so fast?'
Democrats celebrate their election wins _ and immediately turn their attention to next year and hopes for taking control of the U.S. House.
3:25AM ( 9 minutes ago )
Democratic wins: Start of anti-Trump surge or not so fast?
Democrats celebrate their election wins _ and immediately turn their attention to next year and hopes for taking control of the U.S. House.
3:23AM ( 11 minutes ago )
New faces to bring new diversity to Virginia lawmakers
Danica Roem, a transgender woman whose defeat of an outspoken, socially conservative lawmaker has made news around the world, is just one of several women who made history in this week's Virginia elections
3:21AM ( 13 minutes ago )
Pope seeks to defuse Korea tension, push nuclear disarmament
Pope Francis is seeking to defuse rising nuclear tensions on the Korean peninsula and boost support for disarmament with a Vatican conference that will assemble Nobel Peace prize winners, U.N. and NATO officials and a handful of countries with the bomb
3:18AM ( 16 minutes ago )