Congress seen as not likely to pass tax overhaul quickly

09 April, 2017, 03:13 | Author: Michele Stevens
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Administration officials are aware how politically divisive these ideas are, but they are searching for ways find new revenue sources. This would make imports cheaper and exports more expensive, reducing or even eliminating the effect of the tax on consumer prices.

The Trump administration has sent mixed signals on the proposed tax. The White House issued a statement this week saying those taxes weren't really under consideration - an indication of just how early in the process the administration is.

Not a single Republican senator has publicly supported the tax.

The main opposition group, Americans for Affordable Products, debuted on February 1, and now has more than 400 member companies. This means any tax package can be held hostage by hard-liners in the House Freedom Caucus, who aren't likely to be sympathetic to the middle-class-directed tax ideas promoted by National Economic Council head Gary Cohn and others in the White House.

The U.S. government now spends more money than it brings in through revenue, and issuing additional debt to pay for infrastructure projects could widen this annual deficit unless major cuts are made elsewhere in the budget or new taxes are imposed. But the proposal is unpopular with many other Republicans, who have said it would raise costs for consumers on things such as automobiles, electronics and clothing. But whether tax reform will lead to another self-inflicted defeat, or a sweeping victory, is unclear.

A temporary, 10-year tax cut would be open to political attack on the grounds of simply being a repeat of the Bush tax cuts, which were temporary tax cuts, mostly aimed at the rich, with no apparent positive economic effects. The Internal Revenue Service says audits pose no obstacle to releasing tax returns. Today, an American company that sells a product overseas pays taxes to the United States on the sale, but most global competitors remove their domestic value-added taxes from products that are exported here. "This proposal goes one step further by shrinking the overall size of government and streamlining the regulatory state". Arguably the biggest opponent is Arkansas Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., attacked Cruz's plan relentlessly, appealing to Reagan's opposition.

On the other side of the Capitol, though the Senate has been less active (at least publicly) than the House, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) last week noted that "Republicans in the Senate, the House, and the White House agree on about 80 percent of the major tax reform issues, and a number of key and fundamental questions are answered in that 80 percent".

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"I'm thinking about accelerating it".

Such a move could be a long-shot given that just two Republicans, Representatives Mark Sanford and Justin Amash, have signed on to sponsor the proposed bill that would then see a vote.

Trump and his wife Melania paid most of their income tax as an alternative minimum tax, which taxpayers must pay in certain circumstances if they claim many itemized deductions.

"You can't avoid the worries on Wall Street, but with health care going away you've now got four good months" to address business taxes by the August recess, Kudlow said.

"When we do the infrastructure, it's going to be very important to me that if we give billions of dollars to a state, like New York, California or any other state, that they're going to have to start spending that money, they're going to have to have approval within 120 days", Trump said. All the same, a carbon tax also has some support from prominent Republicans. Will it pay for itself with offsets or add to the deficit?

In 2013, the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office projected that a modest tax of $20 per ton of carbon dioxide emissions would raise roughly $1.2 trillion over a decade - roughly the same amount that would be raised by the border adjustment.


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