World Economy

US Tax Reform Bill Delayed as GOP Seeks Unity

US Tax Reform Bill Delayed as GOP Seeks UnityUS Tax Reform Bill Delayed as GOP Seeks Unity

Republicans in the US House of Representatives will delay the release of long-awaited tax legislation by one day until Thursday, the head of the chamber’s tax-writing panel said late on Tuesday.

“In consultation with President Trump and our leadership team, we have decided to release the bill text on Thursday,” House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady said in a statement, Reuters reported.

 “We are pleased with the progress we are making and we remain on schedule to take action and approve a bill at our committee beginning next week,” the Republican lawmaker added.

Republicans, who control both chambers of congress, are looking to tax reform for their first legislative victory since (President Donald) Trump took office in January. Democrats say the Trump tax plan is a giveaway to corporations and the rich.

Trump and other top Republicans have proposed a plan that would cut taxes for corporations, small businesses and individuals by up to $6 trillion over a decade and pay for the reductions in part by eliminating trillions of dollars in deductions and other tax breaks that are often fiercely defended.

The US tax code has not undergone a major overhaul since 1986, when Republican Ronald Reagan was president.

Earlier on Tuesday, House Republicans appeared to be nearing a deal on state and local taxes that would preserve a federal deduction for property taxes but not income taxes, potentially removing a major obstacle.

Republican Representative Tom Reed of New York said the “sweet spot” compromise was gaining support among high-tax state lawmakers who have signaled their opposition to a proposal to repeal the state and local tax, or SALT, deduction.

Another New York Republican saw things differently. “I‘m still inclined to be opposed to it. The income tax is a major factor,” said representative Peter King.

“This is going to affect our country for the next 20 years, for good or bad. I think the last time we did tax reform, there was like two years of debate. We’re going to have 10 days,” he said.

The SALT compromise would reduce, but not eliminate, a disproportional tax impact on upper middle-class families in high-income tax states such as New York, New Jersey and California. Those states send enough Republicans to Congress to derail a tax bill.

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