The House GOP tax bill just cleared a huge hurdle

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paul ryan
House Speaker Paul
Ryan

Yuri
Gripas/Reuters



The House and Ways and Means Committee approved the GOP’s tax
bill on Thursday, clearing another obstacle for the plan.

The committee voted 24 to 16 to report the bill to the
full House on Thursday, with the vote going along party lines.

Most importantly for Republicans, the step keeps
the Tax
Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) in step with their goal to pass
it through the House by Thanksgiving.

While the Ways and Means Committee never threatened to be an
impediment to the bill’s passage — Republicans have a chokehold
on the committee — the committee process resulted in substantial
changes to the legislation’s text.

Some changes made
by the adopted amendments include weakening
a proposed excise tax
on multinational corporations, raising the threshold on a new
tax on private universities’ endowments, and a change to the
so-called carried interest loophole.

The bill now moves to the full House, where GOP leaders will need
to win over a group of noncommittal members to ensure
that the bill is passed.

A handful of GOP lawmakers have said they opposed the
current version of the TCJA because it would eliminate
most of the state and local tax (SALT) deduction. The
TCJA would no longer let people subtract sales and income
taxes imposed by a state or local government from their
federal tax bill, and would only allows for the deduction of
property taxes up to $10,000.

The SALT deduction is popular in states with higher taxes
like New York, New Jersey, and California. A handful of
members from those areas have pushed back against the
SALT deduction proposals.

At the same time that the House is advancing its bill, the
Senate is expected to roll out their tax reform legislation,
which is
expected to be wildly different than the TCJA.

The White House released a statement soon after the bill’s
passage in Ways and Means, applauding the step forward.

Today’s passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act through the
House Ways and Means Committee is an important step toward
providing historic tax relief for the American people,” the
statement said.

“There is still much to do, but the Administration remains
confident that, through continued cooperation with Congress, we
will achieve these priorities this year.”

The differences will likely need to be ironed out in a
conference committee — all while Republicans hope to get a bill

to President Donald Trump’s desk by Christmas.

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