There are lots of competing demands in the Senate — and not a lot of room for error.
The Senate is expected to release its framework for tax reform on Thursday, which differs in key ways from the House plan — but that’s not even its biggest problem.
Getting 50 Republican senators to vote for the final bill will be difficult, especially because there are dramatically divergent views on the bill’s goals.
One of the biggest obstacles is a fight over increasing the deficit. The House plan would do so by an estimated $1.5 trillion over the next 10 years. After Tuesday night’s trouncing in Virginia, Senate Finance Committee Chair Orrin Hatch told the Washington Post that the results of election night could make passing a tax plan more difficult.
We still don’t have details about the plan, but it’s expected to propose delaying the corporate tax cut until 2019, which would substantially lower the cost of the tax cut bill, according to the Washington Post. This is a sharp break both from the House and the White House, who is pushing for deep tax cuts for corporations.
The policy fight over tax reform currently shaping up in Congress is similar to the health care debate in many ways. Lawmakers have an extremely tight deadline and a lot of competing demands. And just like with health care, Senate Republicans have a slim margin of error — they can only afford to lose two votes.
Here are the competing Republican factions on taxes, so far:
The deficit hawks: Bob Corker, Jeff Flake, John McCain
Bob Corker (R–TN) and Jeff Flake (R–AZ) have made it very clear they don’t think a Republican tax bill should increase the national deficit in any way. Corker so far is the only Republican who has explicitly Read More Here