Posted: 4:00 am Monday, October 16th, 2017
By Jamie Dupree
As the U.S. Senate returns to work in Washington, D.C. from a ten day break, President Donald Trump is ready to again publicly press the Congress for action on a sweeping package of tax cuts, meeting on Monday to talk strategy with the top Republican in the Senate, as the GOP continues to quietly put together the details of a tax reform package behind closed doors.
“I really think that we’ve gotta do the most we can,” on tax reform, said Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY), who played golf with Mr. Trump on Sunday at the President’s golf course in Virginia.
“We really, you know, need to do it,” Paul said – though the Kentucky Republican is one of several GOP Senators who have raised questions about the details of the plan, which still have not been released by the White House and GOP Congress.
“The people of this country want tax cuts, they want lower taxes,” the President told reporters last week.
Pres. Trump says he hopes Congress will pass "massive tax cuts for the American people" as a Christmas gift to hard working families. pic.twitter.com/xnkYHZ0qsv
— ABC News Politics (@ABCPolitics) October 13, 2017
But while the President and GOP leaders talk a lot in public about approving a tax reform package, no vote can be taken on that until the Congress first passes a budget outline for 2018, that also authorizes a tax cutting plan under the expedited rules of ‘budget reconciliation,’ which prevents a filibuster in the Senate.
“This country must not miss this opportunity,” McConnell said last week about tax reform – but this week, he must take the first step on the ‘budget resolution,’ which sets an outline for spending in 2018.
The plan approved earlier this month by the Senate Budget Committee would balance the budget within ten years – but, it would also allow the tax plan to create $1.5 trillion in new debt, meaning there would not be a balanced budget during that time.
That has left some Republicans voicing their concerns – and as we saw with health care, it doesn’t take too many GOP Senators going against the President to derail any Trump plan.
Interesting: Senator Todd Young (R-IN) says he’s not willing to “blow a hole in the budget” to pass a tax bill.https://t.co/gGmbJhC8jG
— Sahil Kapur (@sahilkapur) October 12, 2017
It’s also the first time that Senators have been back at the Capitol since the Twitter spat between the President and Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN), who has decided not to run for re-election in 2018.
Corker has also said while he backs tax reform, he doesn’t want to see any tax plan create even a penny of new debt.
Meanwhile, we wait for the details of the GOP tax reform plan – not expected until November.
— Jamie Dupree (@jamiedupree) October 14, 2017