Politics Ready or Not, House Republicans Set Vote on Tax Overhaul

15:56  13 november  2017
15:56  13 november  2017 Source:   Roll Call

House begins revising Republican tax bill to quell dissent

  House begins revising Republican tax bill to quell dissent <p>Facing pockets of discontent in their own Republican ranks, tax negotiators in the U.S. House of Representatives will seek this week to brook differences over their far-reaching tax bill and stick to a self-imposed deadline of passage this month.</p>The House tax-writing committee begins revising the bill on Monday with tweaks and some more substantial changes expected to a number of individual and corporate tax proposals.

The House Ways and Means Committee is expected to approve sweeping legislation to cut taxes for most individuals and businesses on the same day that Senate Republicans are set to unveil their own legislative vision for taxes . CHART: How The Tax Overhaul Would Affect You.

Republicans are set to move quickly to pass a tax bill that they have drafted in secret. WASHINGTON — Almost no one on or off Capitol Hill has seen the tax overhaul bill that The swift pace to complete, release and quickly vote on a tax cut is aimed at leaving little time for the type of

Speaker Paul D. Ryan said the health care debate taught him not to set an “artificial deadline” for passing legislation. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call) © Provided by CQ Roll Call, Inc. Speaker Paul D. Ryan said the health care debate taught him not to set an “artificial deadline” for passing legislation. (Tom Williams/CQ Roll Call)

The scenario is all too familiar: House Republican leaders schedule a floor vote on a major legislative priority and exude confidence the bill will pass despite a chorus of rank-and-file concern. 

GOP leaders insist the tax overhaul they plan to vote on this week is different from the health care bill they had to pull from the floor this spring. But the reality is they are still wrangling the 218 votes needed to pass their tax measure. A possible repeat scenario of the health care debacle looms.

Doing nothing on tax bill could prove good politics for Democrats

  Doing nothing on tax bill could prove good politics for Democrats Democrats are signaling that their strategy on the Republican tax overhaul plan is right out of the GOP's health care playbook: Criticize relentlessly and do little to help make it better.&nbsp;"Want to pass this tax bill? Want to hurt the suburbs? Make our day," said Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer of New York, evoking tough-talking movie star Clint Eastwood.

House Republicans optimistic despite lacking votes for budget resolution. Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady remains optimistic that House Republicans can pass a budget resolution to set up the reconciliation process for a tax overhaul .

California House Republicans support narrow approval of budget, tax overhaul . At her press conference after the budget vote on Thursday, Pelosi reiterated Democrats’ complaint that Republicans tax plan will harm the middle class, not help it, as President Trump and GOP leaders

The House eventually passed the health care overhaul May 4, but that was six weeks after it was originally scheduled for a floor vote. The Senate then failed to pass its own health care measure, killing the effort for now.

After pulling the health care bill from the floor in March, Speaker Paul D. Ryan said he learned not to set an “artificial deadline” for passing legislation. Yet for the past several weeks, Republicans have been working toward a goal of passing a tax overhaul through the House by Thanksgiving and the entire Congress by year’s end.

Republicans say their urgency is based on the desire for tax changes to become effective at the start of the new year. That way, businesses and families can immediately start making financial decisions based on a revised tax code, which they predict will spur economic growth and job creation at rates not seen in recent years. Many also acknowledge that having a legislative win to tout is crucial heading into the 2018 midterms.

Tax Bill Thrown Into Uncertainty as First G.O.P. Senator Comes Out Against It

  Tax Bill Thrown Into Uncertainty as First G.O.P. Senator Comes Out Against It Senator Ron Johnson of Wisconsin said he opposed both the House and Senate tax plans as written, posing a new obstacle to Republican leaders eager to overhaul the tax code.WASHINGTON — Uncertainty gripped the Senate on Wednesday over efforts to pass a sweeping $1.5 trillion tax cut after a Wisconsin Republican became the first senator in his party to declare that he could not vote for the tax bill as written, and other senators expressed serious misgivings over the cost and effect on the middle class.

The 2018 House GOP budget promises deep cuts to social programs and Cabinet agency budgets but its chief purpose is to set the stage for action later this year on a comprehensive Republican overhaul of the U.S. tax code. But Republicans are not actually planning to impose any of those cuts with

5 potential pitfalls for Republican tax overhaul effort. Not every Republican felt this way. Some GOP lawmakers voted against the budget deal last month that paved the way for the tax overhaul process to begin in earnest, concerned it would set a precedent for ignoring rampant federal spending.

“We’re doing this the right way. We’re doing this the regular order way,” Ryan said Thursday at his weekly news conference. “It takes time, but trust me, we’re going to get this over the finish line.”

House Republicans introduced their tax bill Nov. 2 and wrapped up a four-day markup a week later after making additional changes to the measure. The floor vote on the 447-page measure is planned for Nov. 16.

That compressed timeline between the bill’s introduction and passage alone suggests a delay in the floor vote is possible, if not likely. But another more important factor is the whip count.

Nine say ‘no’ — for now

The maximum number of votes Republicans can lose and still pass the bill without Democratic support is 22. While Ryan has said he wouldn’t be surprised if a few Democrats voted for the bill, he acknowledged last week that won’t happen unless Republicans already have 218 of their own members voting “yes.”

Republicans optimistic they'll pass their tax plan

  Republicans optimistic they'll pass their tax plan House Republicans are prepared to pass a massive tax overhaul Thursday -- a feat that hasn't been accomplished in three decades -- likely without the political fireworks or internal heartache that nearly sank the House's Obamacare repeal bill earlier this year. President Donald Trump will speak to the conference Thursday ahead of the vote, but members say it's not because leadership is worried that the votes won't be there.

Members leaving the meeting said they got the impression a vote on the budget resolution, which would be needed for Republicans to move a tax overhaul through the reconciliation process, would not come until after the tax outline is unveiled.

Passing a budget resolution is key to the GOP goal to overhaul the tax system and helps kick-start the appropriations process because it sets topline “If we do not get a budget, most of what we want to accomplish as Republicans will take a major setback,” House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark

There are already nine Republicans who have come out in opposition to the bill because of its changes to the state and local tax deduction, also known as SALT — the measure fully repeals the deduction for state and local income or sales taxes and caps the tax break for property taxes at $10,000.

Absent further changes to the SALT deduction, which appears unlikely, New Jersey Reps. Leonard LanceFrank A. LoBiondo and Christopher H. Smith, New York Reps. Peter T. KingLee ZeldinElise Stefanik and Dan Donovan, and California Reps. Darrell Issa and Tom McClintock are expected to vote “no.”

That leaves GOP leaders with just 13 votes to spare.

As the House wrapped up its legislative week Thursday, many rank-and-file members said they were waiting to review changes the Ways and Means Committee adopted to the bill that afternoon before making a decision about how they would vote.

While members spent their weekends reviewing the changes and analyzing the bill’s overall effects on their districts, they will have likely heard from constituents back home about what they like or don’t like about the legislation.

'Don't spew that stuff on me!': Shouting match erupts in Senate over GOP tax plan

  'Don't spew that stuff on me!': Shouting match erupts in Senate over GOP tax plan The heated exchange came after Republicans successfully voted to move the bill to the Senate floor . Hatch took Brown's charges personally. "What you said was not right! That's all I'm saying," Hatch said. "Now I come from the lower middle class originally. We didn't have anything. So don't spew that stuff on me! I get a little tired of that crap! … I like you personally very much. But I'm telling you this bullcrap that you guys throw out here really gets old after a while. And then to do it right at the end of this is just not right."Democrats say Republicans are rushing the bill through Congress.

House Republicans were not always so ready to take political risks in tax policy. But Republicans were also encouraged to see that Democrats have, to some degree, taken cues from Camp as he has pursued a tax overhaul .

Sorry your free news lookups have been exceeded for the next 5 minutes.

That input will help members solidify their opinions as they return to Washington on Monday when the House GOP whip team — which has been working on members for weeks, even before the bill was released — will begin the formal vote counting process.

Undecideds

Some of the undecided members include New York Reps. John Katko and John J. Faso and California Rep. Dana Rohrabacher.

Rohrabacher said he’s still evaluating the overall effect the bill would have on his constituents.

“If they’re taxed at a higher level, it’s going to be very difficult for me to think that I’m sitting here voting to increase taxes,” he said.

Asked if the whip’s office has presented him with data to try to convince him to support the bill, Rohrabacher said, “They’ve been talking to everybody — everybody.”

Faso, like his fellow New York Republicans, is worried about the partial repeal of the SALT deduction but was still reviewing the bill late last week. He also had concerns about small-business provisions dealing with taxation of so-called pass-through income.

“I wouldn’t have as much problem with that if we were dealing with SALT in a better way because a lot of those highly paid professionals that wouldn’t be eligible under this arrangement are also now going to get a double whammy on SALT,” he said Wednesday. “And I don’t like the fact that we’re removing the benefit of lower marginal rates on the earlier parts of their income.”

White House open to striking health provision from tax bill

  White House open to striking health provision from tax bill The White House says it's willing to strike a health-care provision from Senate legislation to cut taxes and overhaul the tax code if the provision becomes an impediment to passing one of President Donald Trump's top legislative priorities.The provision would repeal a requirement that everyone in the U.S. have health insurance or pay a fine, but has emerged as a major sticking point for Republican Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, whose vote the White House needs. Collins said Sunday that the issue should be dealt with separately.Trump's budget director, Mick Mulvaney, said the White House is open to scrapping the provision, which would repeal a key component of the Affordable Care Act health la

Recent votes on health care reform and budget legislation has showed House Republicans have a razor-thin margin of error when passing major legislation. Meanwhile, downstate Republicans like Reps. Pete King and Lee Zeldin have pledged to reject any Republican tax overhaul that does not

WASHINGTON -- While White House officials are subsumed by the fresh intensity of the special counsel investigation, and House Republicans are preoccupied with propping up the tax overhaul , their GOP colleagues in the Senate are focusing on something not nearly as provocative as either of

Although the Ways and Means Committee amended the small-business provisions Thursday, none of those changes would address Faso’s concerns. The amendment did win over the National Federation of Independent Business, which had initially come out in opposition to the bill. But since it was targeted to small businesses with taxable incomes below $225,000, it did not address concerns some members had about businesses whose incomes exceed that amount.

For example, small-business owners or shareholders who file joint tax returns with incomes between $260,000 and $417,000 and don’t meet the bill’s specifications to qualify for the reduced 25 percent small-business rate would be subject to a 35 percent top rate rather than 33 percent under current law.

The bill also does not include a repeal of the 2010 health care law’s individual mandate, something conservatives had been pushing. While they had not made their votes conditional on repealing the mandate, its exclusion from the bill — coupled with other concerns some members had about the small-business provisions and effective dates of the individual tax relief, among other topics — might make it tough for them to vote “yes.”

Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows said last week he did not expect his group to take an official position on the tax bill, which suggests the caucus is likely divided. With nine members already voting “no,” it would only take opposition from less than half of the 36-member Freedom Caucus for the bill to fail.

While the bill will not be amended on the floor to accommodate members’ concerns, it still needs to go through the Rules Committee, where a substitute amendment could be adopted to accommodate any last-minute changes needed to win over hesitant lawmakers.

As with health care, the deal-making needed to solidify enough support for passage may take time. Bottom line: a floor vote delay is possible but not necessarily fatal.

Get breaking news alerts and more from Roll Call on your iPhone or your Android.

Conservative Group Aims to Sell GOP Tax Plan .
House Republicans passed their version of tax reform last week in a relatively drama-free vote. But as they wait for the Senate to follow their lead, a key conservative group is continuing its aggressive effort to sell the plan to an unconvinced public.American Action Network, a nonprofit organization focused on issue advocacy and allied with Speaker Paul Ryan, spent $20 million boosting tax reform efforts in the run-up to last week's critical vote.

—   Share news in the SOC. Networks

Topical videos:

This is interesting!