Republicans Move to Resolve Tax Bill Differences as Cost Concerns Loom

The Senate voted to begin the formal process of reconciling its tax bill with the House version as lawmakers continued to discuss changes to the legislation.

Comments: 164

  1. This tax law not only takes from the middle class and the poor and gives to the rich, but it also takes from the industrious blue states and gives to lazy red states, a perfect cocktail of Republican ill will that increases economic inequality and partisan discord. It's one of the first tax bills in history that takes specific aim at financially destabilizing and penalizing successful blue states, the nation's greatest success stories. Since 1980, Party First: Country Last sedition has been the Republican Party platform. Nothing destroys countries and civilizations - domestically and abroad - better than Republican ideology.

  2. Just call it greed.

  3. Republicans plan on funding their tax cuts on the backs of the poor and the elderly. “In a sign of their confidence, Republicans are already looking past taxes to their next priority: gutting safety net programs like Medicare and Medicaid. Paul D. Ryan said on Wednesday, “We’re going to have to get back next year at entitlement reform, which is how you tackle the debt and the deficit”

  4. The poor don't pay any taxes, so how does this tax bill takes from them and gives to the rich? The middle income people will get a tax relief.

  5. As was stated the Republicans have come too far to back away from the 20% corporate rate. Which in reality will end up making the US less competitive. There is no way for the Republicans to get around the fact that they are going to greatly increase the national debt and cost the country more in debt service payments. They will also leave many national needs left unmet in the interest of trying to find expedient ways to lessen the impact of this huge tax giveaway.

  6. "... find expedient ways to lessen the impact of this huge tax giveaway." That would be the social safety net deflating. All by plan.

  7. Republicans have openly announced that tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy will be paid for by cutting Medicare and Medicaid. Heartless and corrupt. Never, never vote for any Republican.

  8. "...gutting safety net programs like Medicare and Medicaid." What are you talking about? This writing is weak on news and strong on unsubstantiated opinion.

  9. Maybe they should start by resolving the difference between this disastrous mess and what the nation actually needs.

  10. I truly believe that these politicians don't know their posteriors from a ham sandwich. The previous president was fought tooth and nail over increasing the debt ceiling. Now increasing the deficit by over a trillion dollars is suddenly no big deal. Who is going to pay for this? Certainly not those who are the recipients of their largesse. The patients are definitely running the asylum.

  11. history is a great teacher. Three times the republicans controlled all three branches of govt. All three times the U.S. economy ended up in either a severe recession or a depression. It doesn't take a genius to realize once the financial markets are deregulated coupled with ridiculously low corporate tax rates, disaster is close behind.

  12. "And I think the president’s understanding choice and competition works everywhere in health care." These people are never going to get it and/or acknowledge that healthcare is never going to be the consumer driven shopping spree they pretend it should be. Pathetic.

  13. The old adage applies to this "tax bill"--"You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear." To most Americans, as well as many of the hapless "base," this "tax reform" bill is as toxic as the contents of Minnie's sweet potato pie baked as her revenge in "The Help."

  14. Chocolate pie. The sweet potato pie was from The Color Purple, and was actually salutary.

  15. "In a sign of their confidence, Republicans are already looking past taxes to their next priority: gutting safety net programs like Medicare and Medicaid." Whatever this bill provides to the middle class, it's not a tax "cut" but a huge tax increase (and a lot of anxiety for poor and middle class seniors). Medicare isn't an "entitlement" as the Republicans are wont to label it. It's insurance which premiums people support through payroll deductions their whole lives long and then additional premiums deducted from their Social Security payments during retirement.

  16. So they've run out of the little ways to hurt the lower- and middle-classes, like taxing graduate students, putting homeownership farther out of reach, and taxing health care expense and now have to move on to the core: Medicaid, Medicare, and Social Security. Now we know what "class warfare" means when Republicans cry it out. It means a war on the lower- and middle-income classes in favor of corporations and the 1 percent. Let us hope that Pence is not successful in suppressing votes through his "voter fraud" charade and that the people can throw these bums out in 2018.

  17. The Republicans createca problem with the tax bill so that they can solve it by gutting the social safety net. Why not look at the current cap on income subject to the FICA tax as well,as increasing the payroll tax for both employees and employers over a period of years. Tases suggestions have been made in the past, but never seriously considered.

  18. If the Federal government does not need the money they are about to kick back to the wealthy why not use it to rebuild the nations infrastructure? I realize this is a naïve question given that those who control the Congress and the White House have little interest in the state of the nation but naïve or not it is the right question to ask.

  19. Now, with this obscene tax plan going through, we hear Paul Ryan already bringing up "entitlement reform" for medicare, medicaid and social security. "Entitlement reform" is simply an Orwellian play on words when what he really talking about is "SHAFTING SENIORS" in order to help the rich.

  20. What hypocrites! While pushing through tax cuts for the rich and corporations the republicans have no problem with deficits but the next day they use the deficit as a reason to cut medicare. Voters over 65 won't miss this when they vote in 2018.

  21. Interesting how lip service was paid to eliminating the so-called "carried interest" loophole, but it is left intact in the House bill and slightly limited in the Senate bill. You want to reduce the deficit, end a tax break for Wall Street and increase fairness? Let's all remind Congress about carried interest!

  22. This tax bill will be reconciled and enacted. It’s not what they are promising it will be. It makes what was complicated, more so. It redistributes wealth (money goes to money). It regards healthcare as an off-the-shelf purchase, not a necessity for all. It does nothing to improve the lives of the great majority of the population. The people hate it. Little public input or hearings were used in its creation, under the cover of darkness. The public's apathy will help to push the U.S. into a universe of its own. Republicans cannot deflect what is obvious to everyone else – Party before (insert anything here). Republicans try but can't give an elucidated explanation as to how this bill improves this country. If facts mattered, we would not be here, but here we are, and there goes our social safety net.

  23. I know it is not a new issue but I sure wish they'd stop using the word entitlement, especially in regards to Social Security. That is our money, not theirs to entitle us to. If there were a reset/reboot button, that erased the entire federal government and started over, I'd press it.

  24. Actually it is an entitlement, we paid it in and we are entitled to get it out. HANDS POFF OUR ENTITLEMENTS. PS Mitch and to us, and Susan Collins to get her support. You said Social Security and Medicare were safe. And one day later to renege. Really? Why should we ever believe anything you say? Sen Collins you MUST vote NO. Sen Flake you must vote No. Sen Corker you must vote NO. And Mr Paul and Mr McConnell you should be run out of town on a rail. Have you no decency sirs?

  25. What you gotta do is climb up in Lincoln's lap in the Lincoln Memorial and stick a straightened out paper clip in the small hole right behind his ear and it factory resets the government. Problem is then you lose all your saved files and are back to the original Constitution (no Bill of Rights, no 13th/15th/19th) so you should only do this if there is a serious malfunction.

  26. Thank you Average guy! I too hate the use of the word entitlement for programs that we pay for with each and every pay check we earn. I would also like to urge all "liberal" journalists and talking heads to stop using this term as well. It is pejorative and insulting.

  27. History shows civilizations last about 400 years on average. America has lost its way and taking its show on the road. About 400 years.

  28. I think the South has revisited and won the Civil War. Sandy was the beginning, with it's 90 day refusal of Federal funding. Then Trump's election, the tax legislation giving to the red States and devistating the red States - plus federal legislation allowing persons that own guns in red States to carry them into blue states with no consequences. What more can we stand? The middle class is in the blue states whethet R/D/I will experience major pain in filing our taxes this year and going forward. My hope is that the South will rise up again down right furious that their federal representatives sold them a bill of goods. Just wait till they have to do their taxes - Hope is a good thing ... especially when there is not a lot of it around.

  29. Cutting taxes does not take from anyone. The poor and middle class do not lose anything. The CBO estimates some will choose not to retain health insurance if tax penalty is removed, but that's a choice. To the extent the tax bill will, increase the deficit that will be paid by all, I remind my fellow readers that President Obama added much more than $1T during his eight years leading the country. This is much more a spending problem than a revenue one. Governmental revenues will be much higher in 2027. However, spending will be even higher. We have had many different tax regimes across the history of the United States. Interestingly and often ignored is the fact that the government's share of revenue has consistently measured about 20% of GDP. To increase that percentage, we would have to adopt a new tax--the VAT. I do not see either party lining up to support that type of regressive European taxation. Europe employs a wider safety net, but only in conjunction with a wider tax base.

  30. "often ignored is the fact that the government's share of revenue has consistently measured about 20% of GDP. " So by your logic, cutting taxes by 10% would shrink GDP by 10%. And tax cuts will cause a recession.

  31. President Obama did the honest thing and stopped hiding the two expensive and senseless wars G.W. gave us. The choice not to have health insurance means that the rest of us will have to pick up the tab for these people's ER bills.

  32. So coming into office with the country in the depths of a deep recession had nothing to do with it then? Or bailing out Detroit? Or putting the cost of the Iraqi war started by his predecessor on the country's credit card rather than in the "Other Costs to be ignored" column? Good to know you're so up to date on your Republican factoids.

  33. It's now expected and required for Republicans to use Orwellian doublespeak when lying to their constituents. So cutting Medicare and Social Security becomes "saving" Medicare and Social Security, cutting taxes on the wealthiest Americans and exploding our deficit becomes "investing in America". Republicans know quite well that this ugly tax giveaway won't bring money home that corporations have stashed overseas, cause wages to rise and revenues to go up. It's always astounding to me that they have duped their constituents into swallowing their lies.

  34. "which is how you tackle the debt and the deficit" Would that be the debt and deficit that you just added 1.5 trillion dollars to with this abomination of a bill, Mr. Ryan?

  35. Gutting Medicare and Social Security is stupidly short-sighted (it will create many more problems than it solves) but not for Paul Ryan. No, it’s the bedrock philosophy of a mean-spirited fact-challenged ideologue. One should notice the lack of empirical data in his philosophy, the lack of solutions to the myriad problems his policies create. Notice that rather than fix Medicare and SS’s problems, the only “solution” he offers is to take it away from people. It’s astounding that somehow this mediocre, yet determined, man became the “brainy guy” in the GOP. The only good thing is that he’s so politically inept that he doesn’t bother to hide his desires behind subterfuge. Instead he writes the Democrats’ mid-term campaign ads, including those of his opponent.

  36. What an absolute joke this whole tax deal is. The GOP is shaping, reshaping, and reshaping again, trying to make that abomination into something palatable not the the nation but to there own people. It's like watching a pack of vultures fight over the carcass of the middle class. They are all in complete denial of the consequences of what they are doing. Do they really expect the voters to go along with this thing in 2018 and 2020?

  37. If the only way to pay for this is grievous cuts to programs like Medicare, Medicaid, or Social Security, that is Satanic. It's destroying the futures of millions to provide an undeserved entitlement for a handful of people - who already have heavily skewed the System in their favor. This is not any form of Democratic Process, or Representative Government. It's a sign that fundamentals of our Government are profoundly Broken, and need a total overhaul.

  38. I can hardly wait for the name of the Republican bill attacking Medicare. I am certain it will contain both of the words "Liberty" and "Freedom" but deny both to the people it affects. Anyone seeking care will need to show an approved gov't photo ID available once a month at a State Capitol or a concealed carry permit validated by the NRA to access care.

  39. Ryan, the snake oil salesman, is keen on gutting Medicare and Social Security to pay for impending deficit exploding tax cut, the benefits of which go to the people who don't need it. Does anyone see what's going on here? The tax cut, currently on the verge of passing, is the last bite at the apple for the rich, or :"gift" before the gutting of entitlements. It is a cynical strategy to give the middle class a "taste" of tax relief , lulling them, while moments later they give up or fail to register their resistance to cutting Medicare and Social Security. It's a manufactured crisis. The hypocrisy of Ryan is believable. Nauseating. The deficit will in short order be on a path to grow by 1.5 trillion...which is unsustainable unless entitlements are cut for future generations. So, not only is he saddling our children with this monstrosity down the road, he is cutting their future benefits later to pay for it. Only an amoral person would push this nonsense.

  40. He is not amoral he and all republicans everywhere are immoral.

  41. From an economic viewpoint, nothing about this makes any sense at all. Gutting the upper middle class, the spenders, will only tank the economy. Cutting Medicaid and Medicare will only burden local government who are already under fire. Deficit spending is a tax on the future of my son. I will not stand for it. Revolution is an American right, and don't think it cannot happen, Republican traitors to the Constitution.

  42. Has anyone looked into how many companies actually pay the 35% corporate tax rate? With all the loopholes that our tax code is riddled with, I find it hard to believe that most companies will actually see any reduction in the amount they pay in taxes. So the supposed benefits loudly proclaimed by republicans go up in smoke - just like their claim that America will "grow out of" its mounting deficit. The honest, principled answer is to raise the withholding for Medicare and Social Security so that they are self-supporting as they were designed to do 75 years ago. Is there something unAmerican about that approach?

  43. Well done GOP - you did it. You did something - even if that something is Phase 1 of a 2-part plan to completely eradicate the New Deal and those pesky 'entitlements' that could also be going to your clients. I can hear the twice-born Deficit Hawks screeching 5 years from now. Of course, by then it will be too late. The dollar will not be the reserve currency anymore and nobody will buy the debt. Then the weeping and wailing and gnashing of teeth begins in earnest.

  44. There has been so little analysis that shows how creating a new lower taxed tier will effect the rest of us. With lower rates for pass-through this means that many owners/principles will pay lower rates than their employees. This is not tax reform it is the largest redistribution from middle to wealthy the world has ever seen. How the AMT is changed or eliminated will further drive inequality It is not tax reform if Capital Gains, Carried Interest and Pass through businesses pay lower rates than workers. Salt taxes are meaningless to those captured by the AMT. If the AMT is eliminated for businesses and kept for workers there will be no reason for me to work anymore -

  45. The talk of Medicaid/Medicare cuts proves the fact the tax plan, even in it's cobbled together, penciled in the margins form, is a massive giveaway to the very rich and a totally unsustainable way to run a country.

  46. Any congressman or senator who want to be in office after the next election should just abandon this mess and vote no. It is not hard to find lots of legitimate reasons for saying no, and impossible to find good reasons for supporting it.

  47. Entitlement reform, particularly that of healthcare, is only going to emphasize the funnel that is taking money from the middle class and giving it to the 1%. If we're going there, might we take a second look at the pyramid scheme that is social security first? Obviously, without a growing population and workforce, that is not going to last. But we'll see if the Republican party continues its descent into delusion.

  48. The unvarnished tell: “We’re going to have to get back next year at entitlement reform, which is how you tackle the debt and the deficit,” the speaker of the House, Paul D. Ryan, Republican of Wisconsin, said on Wednesday during an interview with the radio host Ross Kaminsky. First up for the GOP ax are Medicaid and Medicare. This was the underlying agenda from the get go. The 2018 mid-term elections need to absolutely put the breaks on this Republican blatant swindle. The GOP majority in both houses of the Congress is an existential threat to the vast majority of Americans. This is especially the case given the occupant of the Oval Office.

  49. The immense hutzpah of these criminals tells you how much respect they have for their base. They are not even waiting until this bill that borrows over a trillion dollars to give to billionaires is signed before they tell us how they are going to use it for an excuse to steal our retirements.

  50. G. Sears, I agree with you!

  51. Mr. Ryan says he wants to cut Medicare and Medicaid to reduce the deficit, after passing a tax bill that will see the federal government borrow over a trillion dollars to lower taxes on the rich.

  52. If the stock market is steadily rising, why do corporations need tax cuts? I've always been told a rising market is an indication of a healthy business environment. Meanwhile, it will result in slashed healthcare benefits and services at a time when everyone is acknowledging we have an opioid crisis. We've had a rash of mass shootings that gun rights advocates insist is a mental health crisis, but those benefits and services will also be slashed. This seems akin to giving a healthy person chemotherapy and expecting it to somehow magically benefit an actual cancer patient who is not getting treatment.

  53. A rising stock market is due to optimistic investor opinion of the health of the business environment so the recent explosion is due (at least in part) to the expectation that the tax bill is going to pass. I don't disagree that it is an unnecessary giveaway to corporations and the wealthy but I don't think we would have seen this kind of expansion in the stock market without the promise of tax cuts on business. Side note, I wouldn't be surprised if there were a few hedge fund managers pumping cash into the reelection funds and PACs for a few Republican Senators to get them to vote NO on this bill so they can clean up by shorting the market. Icahn or Soros or Simons could afford to buy a few of the more moderate Republican Senators who could then claim they are voting NO based on some contrived moral stand and tank the whole thing.

  54. Yep, already talking about cutting Medicare and Medicaid. Couldn’t’t even wait till they passed this lumped together cut and pasted bill. Nothing says good economy better than a sick populous and that is what the Republicans are trying to do. It was noted that the estate tax cut was because those people worked sooo hard rather than squander their money. Why should they need to fund the government. Guess what, I am not sure who he was talking to but it wasn’t the dual income family of 4 who can hardly pay the bills much less save. And now you want to cut their protection in later life after they have saved not nearly enough to live off of because Social Security will be next.

  55. The ink is not even dry in the margins of the $ 1 trillion dollar deficit creating "tax" bill that the Senate passed, and the House is already looking to cut Medicaid and Medicare benefits to address the "debt and debit issues" which BTW, 51 Republican members of the Senate chooses to ignore/deny last week. Hypocrisy has reached new heights. We as a people should be better than this.

  56. The Libertarian agenda has always been cut SS and Medicare, cut education, environmental protection, the arts; in fact, eliminate all government spending that is not either for the military or the police - just read David Koch's 1980 platform. There are no more Republicans. Paul Ryan is Koch's creature. Running up the deficit is the favored ploy to achieve this.

  57. The GDP comment is hilarious. These tax cuts will hurt the economy and cause a recession, just like for Bush. These rich tax cuts are job killers. Forty years of evidence we have now, tax cuts kill the economy and raising taxes to balance the budget feeds the middle class and also the economy. They're set to kill the Obama economy.

  58. The problem is not tax cuts per se. The problem is that so little of the "savings" generate real economic growth. For example, if the so-called job creators just buy back their own stock, they'll just goose the market and make the next crash deeper. And if those buybacks occurred at the peak, a crash robs a company of cash it will need to stay the course. Case in point: RadioShack https://www.fool.com/investing/general/2014/07/17/how-radioshack-made-bi...

  59. Yeah, great! Hot diggety dog! The tax cut is gonna produce 6% growth in GDP. Whoopee, not! I think Mr. President means the tax cut is gonna produce 6% downward growth in the GDP. With fiscal principles based on the likes of the examples from OK, KS, TX, etc..., we can already see where this stale old road show is going. Voodoo economics, the Laughter Curve, the Over the Top Promises ... But the orange oracle says believe me, believe me, so... "Hey, is it too late to enroll in Trump U to get a leg up on the soon to be booming real estate bonanza?" No money down, and a couple making 40,000 a year can qualify for special financing and move into that $750,000 dream home furnished by an equity loan based on thin air, not to mention a nifty in-ground pool, just sign on the dotted line, please.

  60. Any rational person can see this tax bill was written in haste with little or no regard for the well-being of the average American. It is another example of the bait-and-switch Republican rhetoric unleashed on our people for the sole purpose of showcasing political dominance and further enriching their wealthy party elites. The GOP is a broken party on the precipice of total annihilation by the very people they seek to hoodwink. We see through you and will sacrifice everything to repeal all of your disastrously inept legislation.

  61. With all of these tortuous "fixes" to the tax bills provisions, I think we can now ignore Paul Ryan's postcard tax form and return to the use of professional tax preparers. What an ungodly mess.

  62. Except they're taking away the deduction for tax preparation, so that too will be coming out of your own pocket, thank you.

  63. Let's review. - The Republicans started out calling for "tax reform." The bill has devolved into garden variety tax cuts. - The Republicans claimed this was a tax cut for the middle class. It is now a temporary cut for some - with an expiration date - and a tax hike for many others. Meanwhile, the Republicans ignored the real opportunities for reform in the tax code: - Passive income, such as capital gains, dividends, and carried interest, are taxed at the most favorable rates. Why should the tax code punish earned income from labor, and favor passive income? - The step-up basis for inherited assets is retained. This is a boon for intergenerational wealth transfer. There is no economic or social rationale for this policy. The Republicans have made it clear that they favor passive income and inherited wealth, and are happy leaving those who work for a living with the bill.

  64. Yes, a country that actually values work, would have a tax code that favors work over building robots to replace workers. Billionaires pay 15% capital gains, while workers pay up to 39%. Take back your country.

  65. I agree... all income should be taxed at the same rate. No discounts for dividends or interest. Yes, I own stocks that pay dividends and bonds.

  66. The Republicans have already started in on their deficit reduction scheme. Cut Social Security and Medicare and all other programs to help the disadvantaged. Trumps 6% growth rate, a basically ridiculous and dangerous idea, would absolutely lead to epic interest rates. Has the Republican War on Education made them too stupid to admit or recognize the obvious?

  67. Social Security and Medicare are not for the disadvantaged. They are for retired workers that paid into these programs asrk of their lives. Workers are entitled to our entitlements because we paid for them in advance. Billionaire owned Global Corporate Mass Media has been telling you for decades that Social Security and Medicare are insolvent for the express purpose of making billionaires richer by stealing your retirement. It is a lie. These programs are easily fixable without letting Wall Street steal from them. Democrats must fight loud and hard for these programs. Take a Stand.

  68. Short answer: YES!

  69. The evil elves like Paul Ryan continue to make this a very un-Happy Holiday season for the middle- and lower-classes after shifting over $1 trillion from them to give to their billionaire benefactors and wealthy corporations under the guise of tax reform, by now planning "entitlement reform" (aka grabbing from Medicaid and Medicare to cover the deficit the tax reform will produce). The Scrooge-in-Chief and his Grinch associates are stealing Christmas and the New Year along with it. And when people wake up and discover coal (yes, the miners are back at work) in their stockings, they'll realize that a government shutdown might not be such a bad thing after all.

  70. Aside from all of the nonsense in the GOP tax bill, I find it interesting that McConnell and Ryan posed as 'deficit hawks' while Obama was in office, but now with Trump, they are not interested in how high the deficit can go. So much for their devotion to 'fiscal responsibility'. They are merely a pair of dissemblers.

  71. Oh they are interested alright, next on their list after a huge tax cut for the uber wealthy is cuts to SS and Medicare because of the deficit. The deficit they are making worse.

  72. Your choice of "interesting" is interesting. I'd say predictable. After all, Obama's stimulus was designed to create jobs, not stock buybacks.

  73. Under Clinton they were also deficit hawks, Then when Bush got elected, Cheney announced "deficits don't matter," and they blew up the deficit with massive military spending, wars, and tax cuts. Then Obama gets elected, and despite a great recession that pushed interest rates below zero, everything Obama wanted to do would "destroy the economy" because of deficits. And they blamed Obama for the ferrous created by then under Bush. Now Trump is president and deficits borrowed to give to billionaires "pay for themselves." The sad part is that Centrist Democrats keep worrying about deficits no matter which party is in power, instead of worrying about workers. Government spends most of its money in the US. Tax breaks for the rich can be spent on anything, anywhere in the world. Mathematically, this means government spending is far more likely to stimulate the economy than tax cuts. Tax cuts are more likely to stimulate the Chinese economy. Too bad centrist Democrats refuse to make a case for better policies

  74. Deficits do matter. Whatever tax breaks we may see up front in terms of tax brackets and higher standard deductions, the truth will hit the fan maybe a decade later when our children are much poorer and the entire country is less economically stable because of the deficits that will continue to explode if this plan goes into effect. Don't take it just from me. Read all the reports from economists who actually know what they are writing about. Don't believe what you are hearing from Republican Congressmen because they are just politicians who have been lying all their political lives and no longer know the difference between a lie and the truth. We will all be hurting 10 years from now and then it will be too late to stop this runaway train.

  75. If you live in a state where your senator or congressperson voted for this tax sham that rewards the wealthy and corporate class, while sticking it to middle and working class households, there is still time to stop it. Call your representatives and let them know that you don’t support the bill as it is written.

  76. Actually I will continue to vote and support my Senator Heller here in Nevada. As a CPA I believe that this bill will help most middle income people. it will certainly spur jobs in Nevada,particularly construction jobs. Nevada is growing and a number of Californians are relocating to Nevada due to the affordability of housing and low taxes.

  77. Good luck with that. It's a great idea, but the Republicans are bought and paid for by their rich donors. I called our Republican Representative to voice my views, and got a form letter telling me how proud he was to have voted for the tax bill. The only thing the Republicans fear is millions of Americans getting off their chairs and voting them out of office. If that happens, they might actually listen to their constituants. Until then, they are deaf to the people they represent.

  78. My gravey grabbing rep doesn’t care. Calling him does no good. He is a firm Trumpublican who uses his position to support anything the administration proposes. He ducks out of town halls and has no interest in being anything but a foot soldier for Trump. He is a wealthy farmer who will benefit from this huge welfare payout to the rich. Grass roots is the key here. We are in a battle for the soul of this country. Pushing these unresponsive Congress people out is the only hope. There are seven seats we can flip in my state in 2018 for the house. That will go a long way to showing what can happen in 2020.

  79. It is easy to come up with 500 pages of a tax code, when it is very partisan; it is much harder to fix what will be broken by the very same 500 pages. The so called party of "fiscal responsibility", painted themselves into a corner. They have also received the wrath from the wealthy, the middle class, the working class, corporations, lobbyists, several industries (real estate and health care most notably), conservative, neutral and liberal media outlets. Individual taxpayers are finally figuring out that they will not be getting a big tax cut, but mere crumbs or seeing their tax liability go up. The same goes for retirees. Republicans in so called "blue states", are making themselves heard; quite loudly. And groups, like AARP, are making it very clear they will not stand fro cuts in Social Security or Medicare to fix the $1,000,000,000,000 deficit the tax cuts create. And corporations, and the super wealthy, who will get the most out this, are not happy that it will create a deficit, and possibly see this bill have a negative impact on the consumer economy. It does them no good, if more disposable income goes to taxes, and not to purchasing good and services. And they certainly do not like the idea of deficit spending, which will have other long term impacts. It is time this tax bill becomes a bi-partisan effort, and should be heavily debated, amended, akin to the 1986 Tax Bill. It also should take more time, and not pass a bill for the sake of passing one.

  80. In today's OP, "fiscal responsibility" is just a cudgel to beat "those people" with, not a standard to apply to oneself. See also: ACA and "individual mandate." Sent a thrill up Heritage's collective leg until . . .

  81. Corporations have figured out that pressuring the wages and discretionary spending of consumers will hurt their businesses? Someone needs to tell WalMart now.

  82. I laughed our loud when I heard Susan Collins on Sunday refer to the iron clad promise she had received that entitlements would not be reduced because of this bill.

  83. While California burns this is a good time to note that losses from fire are no longer deductible under the Trump Tax plan

  84. Republicans indeed have duped their constituents in believing their lies about "trickle down economics" It seems they are never learn. I lived in Houston, Tx, for about 10 years and traveled around Texas and paid no state tax. I can tell you that the infra structure was then in poor condition and the point holes, highways and roads in general were in terrible shape. I can not speak to the availability or how helpful social services are. I now live in the state of NY and yes I pay state income tax. I do not mind because NY state provides more services and certainly takes care of the roads and highways. That is not to say that we don't have a crumbling infrastructure especially bridges however, it is certainly not as bad as it was in Texas.

  85. So, the next move by the Republicans, according to Paul Ryan, is "entitlement reform," which means cutting Medicare and Medicaid, two programs that low-income Americans, especially, rely on for support. With this huge tax cut for the wealthy, their program can be clearly and directly stated: Make the rich richer and the poor poorer. This is class warfare, and all the weapons are in the hands of those that can afford it. The only sure way to stop this is through the ballot box. Now is the time to start supporting viable candidates to replace Republicans in 2018.

  86. Mr. McConnell's state, Kentucky, returns him to Congress time and time again, and with good sized majorities. Yet Kentucky is hugely dependent on federal funding ($2.39 returned for every $1 sent) with something like 40% of all children covered by Medicaid alone (Kaiser Family Foundation). Kentucky also ranks 6th for the highest rates of opioid deaths and ranks 45th in overall health status but Mr. McConnell is gleefully now saying after the Republican tax vote that his next priority is to gut 'entitlements' such as Medicaid, Medicare and Social Security. There must be a couple million Kentuckians who would suffer dreadfully if Mr. McConnell gets his way; all I can assume is that they truly don't realize they are recipients of significant federal aid and that he is actually taking aim at them. Should the National Democratic Party leadership come out from wherever they're hiding perhaps they could quickly invest some time and money to help Mr. McConnell's constituents finally make the connection. Find a way to get Kentuckians to run Mr. McConnell 'out of town' and the dominos will begin to fall elsewhere.

  87. Donald, here's the art of the deal: Reduce corporate tax rates to zero the day the 34th state approves a constitutional amendment declaring corporations are not persons in the political process, and may not in any way, shape, or form, contact or communicate with elected political officials that their staffs ever; and that no individual may contribute in excess of $100 to all candidates combined in each election cycle.

  88. I wish the NY Times would accurate report the cost of these tax cuts. The national debt was already projected to rise by $10 trillion over the next decade under the current tax code. The Republicans are borrowing an additional $1.5 trillion in order to give tax cuts to their favored constituents. So much for the so-called "Party of Fiscal Responsibility." The economy is doing fine today. Unemployment is down to 4.1%. Corporate profits are at record highs. It is not raining today. It is time to pay our bills. Why are we even talking about tax cuts?

  89. Corporations have been making record-breaking profits. There has been nothing stopping them from investing in the US, paying their employees more, or supporting the infrastructure that they disproportionately benefit from. They clearly do not "need" tax breaks. American citizens do---THEY are the real job makers. If they don't have money to spend, then their won't be any demand.

  90. A $10,000 deduction for state and local taxes is essentially worthless when the standard deduction is $12,000. Republicans say they are against double taxation but taxing the same income on both the state/local and federal level is the ultimate double taxation. This needs to be fixed.

  91. We do not need a tax cut, we need to tax the wealthy at a much higher rate to advance the common good of all citizens. The economy statistically is doing fine. Taxes need to be raised to pay down the debt, to rebuild our third world infrastructure, to provide health care to all citizens, and to make education more affordable not less. We are not investing in our future. We are providing a ephemeral endorphin rush to the greedy and nothing of value to the future stability of America. There are no analyses that support the idea that tax increases will rev up the economy under the conditions we are currently under.

  92. The ONLY way to "Fix" this Tax Bill is to go back to Square One, get the Democrats involved, and present a NEW Tax Bill that helps the people who work hard to continue to build our Country. NOT help corporations who are only interested in building better salaries for top managers, gain more interest in stock investments into their corporations and pay BIGGER dividends to all investors.

  93. They need to scrap this terrible approach, have an extended series of public hearings before and after the draft new legislation. That legislation should not be designed to punish workers, students and home owners just so the rich can take even more of the pie than they already get. Tie the top tax rate to the average family income. If more people are working and getting paid better than the tax rate can drop. These two bills are an abomination and should not be considered this year until they have been publicly vetted as a single bill.

  94. why does the NYT not point out that Social Security and Medicare are still completely covered by payroll taxes that are designed to pay for those items. Because of the salary cap these taxes are regressive. Any attempt to pay for tax cuts for the wealthy through social security tax is an attempt to steal the money from the social security fund for general treasury.

  95. “We will take all that up in conference,” Mr. Brady said. “I continue to make the point the 20 percent rate is crucial to competitiveness.” "Competitiveness" is the GOP term for greed.

  96. Maybe it is undiagnosed dyslexia but for a milli-second my blood pressure went down to normal. My brain combined Resolve and Differences and I thought Congress had agreed to Dissolve the tax bill.

  97. Paul Ryan's version of 'helping' Medicare very likely involves a scalpel. And it's also likely the 'patient' will be vivisected. The republican's have been scheming to gut the safety net created by more enlightened law makers for...what?...50 years? What hope there is in preventing this evisceration lies in Democratic senators and congressmen/women who have not demonstrated the savvy or backbone to plan or mount an effective defense. Too bad for America. Too bad for Americans.

  98. The GOP couldn't care less about the costs of their tax cuts.

  99. “I can’t imagine having come this far we’re not going to finish the job,” Mr. McConnell of Kentucky told the radio host Hugh Hewitt on Wednesday. Really? Congress was supposed to pass individual appropriations bills by October 1. Not done yet. Perhaps Mr. McConnell should focus on finishing that job.

  100. More economic nonsense from the party which specializes in fantastical economic projections. There is an ironclad rule with regard to growth of the economy, it is: population growth plus productivity equals economic growth. Population growth in the United States has been declining or at best stagnant. Under restrictive immigration policies we are not adding workers from outside the country, so the number of workers is quantified and measurable. Productivity has never been high enough to sustain economic growth above 3% for nearly 60 years. So for Trump to state that the economy will be growing at above 3% and up towards five or 6%, is absolute pure nonsense. However, we've become a nation of gullible fools, who are willing to believe the snake oil salesman in chief and our GOP Representatives who are falling over each other to give corporations and the wealthy and unnecessary tax cut. www.motherjones.com/kevin-drum/2017/05/productivity/

  101. Ryan's "Path to Prosperity" plan also called for a 39% reduction in Social Security!

  102. My trump friends are waking up and shocked. Fox has told them nothing of this. My fear, and I have told them this, is them. One is a professional gun shooting competitor on public assistance. What will they do when they lose everything?

  103. Back in the days of the Vietnam War, the phrase used was "We had to destroy the village to save it." Today, it is "We have to destroy the country to save it." January 20, 2021 cannot come fast enough.

  104. Paul Ryan, of course, gave away the game. Use the deficits that this sham of a "tax reform" bill will create as an excuse to fulfill his life long dream of attacking Social Security and Medicare. Of the supreme irony of his getting SSA survivor benefits when his dad passed away doesn't seem to dawn on him. Well, Mr. Speaker, if you want to gut SSA and Medicare, go ahead and try. You better remember, however, that the most consistent and dependable voters. year in and year out, are seniors. They will not take kindly to your plans to cut two programs that they paid taxes into throughout their working lives and they will let you and your band of right wing ideologues know it come election day.

  105. Here's the difference in a nutshell: The Senate bill doesn't punish, ahem, "those people" enough. The House bill doesn't reward, ahem, "our people" enough. They'll work it out. They always do.

  106. This bill spells doom for the middle class, poor, vulnerable and disadvantaged. 50 percent of america owns 10 percent of the national wealth, Their taxes are going up and safety net is being slashed. They have no savings. A great depression is around the corner. GE slashed 20,000 jobs today. They are paying zero taxes already. AI and robotics are going to cause many millions of jobs to go away. Foreign governments are going to slash taxes on their companies, negating the tax cut that US corpirations get. The tax bill is a huge destoyer of jobs, health care and education for the middle class and poor.

  107. “That sounds like a kind of reasonable idea,” Mr. McConnell said, referring to a proposal brewing among House Republicans that would give people the option of deducting up to $10,000 in income taxes or property taxes. Right now, both bills would only allow taxpayers to deduct property taxes and cap that at $10,000. ---- It was a reasonable Idea to allow a deduction for ALL taxes paid to state and local governments. Then the Rs decided that the deduction was "unreasonable" especially for high tax, BLUE states. Now it is reasonable again? Why is it reasonable for a flesh and blood "person" to pay a tax on money that you spend as a TAX? Corporate "persons" (businesses) get to deduct their ENTIRE tax bill as part of their "business expenses." Do these guys have a clue, other than any deduction for their fat cat contributors is "good" by definition? Maybe we can give our Rs in Congress a clue on November 6, 2018, and then give them a lot of free time to mull the clue over.

  108. The Senate tax bill contains a provision to open parts of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) to oil and gas drilling. This refuge belongs to all of us. If you oppose opening ANWR, please tell your Congressperson not to vote for this measure. Twelve GOP representatives have written a letter of opposition to Mitch McConnell. Six of the twelve voted for the House tax bill: Brian Fitzpatrick (PA), Ryan Costello (PA), Patrick Meehan (PA), Dave Reichert (WA), Mark Sanford (SC), and Carlos Curbelo (FL). Six others voted against the House bill: Frank LoBiondo (NJ), Christopher Smith (NJ), Leonard Lance (NJ), Dan Donovan (NY), Elise Stefanik (NY), and John Faso (NY). There is still hope if these twelve remain committed to protecting the refuge and are joined by others.

  109. No matter what the cost, in monetary terms or human lives destroyed, our politicians must answer to the people who own them. This country is not only a failed democracy, its the poster-child for anti-capitalism.

  110. When congressmen talk of the state and local tax deductions as proving up bloated local governments, they should look to the percentage of federal tax that comes back to a jurisdictions. It is the red states that accept more federal funding than they send that are bloated. The blue states end up subsidizing their lack of local government.

  111. 'In a sign of their confidence, Republicans are already looking past taxes to their next priority: gutting safety net programs like Medicare and Medicaid. “We’re going to have to get back next year at entitlement reform, which is how you tackle the debt and the deficit,” the speaker of the House, Paul D. Ryan, Republican of Wisconsin, said' Well I've got an easy way to shave $1.5 trillion from the deficit, Mr. Ryan. Apparently that's not your real issue, though, so it's understandable that you're going to ignore it while you try to make poor people poorer. Don't worry, Democrats will manage to get that $1.5 trillion of red ink back off the books when we kick you and your party out of control of Congress and later the White House.

  112. Let us abandon the pretense that we have a government of the people and by the people. We have a dictatorship managed by a super-rich oligarchy like the Koch brothers that controls the Republican Party. The ignorant and unstable Trump is merely a clown show distraction. There is no legislative process, there are only orders from on high in the GOP. This is not a tax bill, it is a plan to steal from the poor to give to the rich while destroying healthcare, the environment, infrastructure and the middle class. McCain, Collins and Flake have turned out to be political cowards of the first magnitude. As long as we pretend that "Congress" is functional as a representative body we will continue to maintain the pretense that the US is a democracy. It is not. We can only hope that the younger generation that has the most to lose will take to the streets as their parents and grandparents did in the "60's to demand justice and to take back our government from the hands of the corporate fascists who now control it as the result of a failed electoral system.

  113. Spin, The country is against this massive corporate tax cuts while people get tax increases. This is Alice in Wonderland. Massive evil corrupt non-people, corporations, get cuts, for funding sleaze bags like Ryan, Trump, McConnell and the entire Republican establishment with their hands out like homeless people on the street.

  114. Remember what Cheney, et. al. said - deficits don't matter (unless, of course, it's a Democrat in the WH).

  115. I can deduct the cost of storing my private jet! Thank you Paul Ryan,Mitch McConnell and President Trump. I knew you would look out for the right people wink wink.

  116. I have confidences in the GOP looting the country and coming up with more fuzzy math to declare this worst tax bill in history doesn't cost too much to pass.

  117. While the masses are distracted by Trump's ravings, the GOP quietly goes about installing its kleptocracy. Democrats have surrendered to pursue Al Franken (a leaky faucet in the face of Roy Moore the overflowing toilet), and will stand by wringing their hands until their party is declared illegal. No wonder Bitcoin is reaching new levels of value! You won't want to be paid in taxable cash any more, it'll all be sent to some red state instead.

  118. Obama added 9 TRILLION dollars to the United States deficit, over 8 years, to pay for a putrid economic "recovery". The tax bill moving through reconciliation adds 1 trillion over 10 years, but will spur the economy in ways that Obama never could. So many of you want to jump on the republicans wailing against Obamas deficit spending and supporting this bill but aren't all of you just as guilty of nearly the exact same thing ? Hypocrisy.

  119. Same old same old Republican cant. I guess you forgot about Bush's bail out of the banks. And a small matter of a financial crisis caused by unregulated mortgage securities. Check out the "Big Short," if you don't believe me. Obama's net effect on the debt at the end of his second term was negligible. Just track the overall growth of GDP during his two terms. Compare that to Bush's tax cuts and their impact on the deficit. Cast the log out of your eye and

  120. A) There is/was a recovery despite the denials and Trump was riding its coat tails. B) Trump speak "spur the economy" as there is no way of knowing and all evidence of cutting taxes the rich has shown the opposite effect on the economy in the past. C) Obama's adding the deficit was to directly help the economy while the Republicans do to purposefully, stated right our loud, to give the wealthy and corporations more money based on voo-doo pipe dreams it will "trickle down" to the masses.

  121. Amazing bias hidden in plain sight in this "news story" -- how after tax reform passes the GOP will focus on "their next priority: gutting safety net programs like Medicare and Medicaid." "Gutting"? Really, New York Times? These programs (along with Social Security) are facing tens of trillions in unfunded liabilities. How about "saving the solvency of programs like Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security."

  122. Starting with raising the income limits on annual Social Security contributions. Let the rich pay into the system for every nickle they make extra. No annual limit. The more they make the more they pay in. Let the hedge-fund guys pay into social security from their carried interest income. Same with Medicare. Investment income is income and should be treated the same as my wages and yours.

  123. Well, if you have been paying a lifetime into these programs, that right-wingers somehow call free, and suddenly someone comes along and says - "You know all that money that you paid into the program for the last 40 years in expectation of it being there when it was your turn to be older?, Well sorry wave bye-bye and take a hit on the chin for being so gullible..." - it would feel like someone his gutting the program to you too.

  124. Paul Ryan has been talking for years about turning Medicare into a "voucher" program. This isn't something new..

  125. I wish someone would ask Mitch why we have to take money from the poor and give money to the rich.

  126. So the Republicans are no longer deficit hawks, but doves. They claim, as does Trump, that our economy will grow "bigly". Since when have the Republicans been so concerned about job creation? Lowering the Corporate tax rate will not create any jobs. Supply and demand is what determines the employment of more workers. The Republicans take us for fools It has been proven over and over that this is not what happens. The wealth does not get distributed to workers. It goes to owners, Corporate Boards and shareholders. I am always astonished to listen to their lies. It is like listening to a horrible song on the radio. The DJs play it over and over and pretty soon you are thinking "well maybe it is not so bad after all" You say a lie over and over and people forget that it is a lie.

  127. Republicans have shot themselves in the foot and now are about to shoot the other foot. The truth about whom they serve is on display for all to see and the number of voters they serve is much less than the number of voters they do not serve. Should be an interesting 2018!

  128. If the GOP can go after Obamacare based on taking certain phrases out of context, surely the final tax bill is not going to fit within the reconciliation framework. The Dems better keep up the fight on this, even after the dust settees.

  129. "Mr. Trump said .....that the last step of the process would ensure that the “sliver” of taxpayers who do not currently receive relief from the legislation were taken care of." This "sliver" is taking on the proportions of one of Paul Bunyon's logs. All Seniors with medical bills and anyone who itemises in a state with high taxes would be part of this "sliver".

  130. Amazing! They haven't even reconciled the tax bill yet, and they're already talking about how the deficit they made means they have to steal America's retirement. You have paid into Social Security, Medicare, and Medicaid all of your working life. That is why they are entitlements. You paid for them already. Then Republicans borrow from them for wars and tax cuts, and refuse to raise the income limit on donations a few thousand dollars, as an excuse to steal the money. Privatization of these programs will mean global corporations get to loot them, while you work until you're 80 out eat at soup kitchens. Does anyone really believe these CEOs care if you starve or die of treatable diseases? These psychopaths are destroying the world while their global corporate mass media tells us it's inevitable. Another world is possible.

  131. Trump may not drink alcohol, but he must be taking drugs. Pigs will fly on the day that this tax bill provides lower taxes for everybody and the economy grows at 6%, as he now promises. As one of the "sliver" populous, I can't wait for my check. Brooklyn Bridge, anyone?

  132. One of the most appalling thing about this effort is the targeting of taxpayers in big blue states. Everyone from California, NY, NJ, etc. should contact the Republicans in their state's congressional delegation and harangue them for supporting the Republican war on their States. Their are more Republican congressmen from California than from Alabama, Wyoming, Utah, and Kansas combined.

  133. The American people see right through this charade. 75% do not support it.

  134. Thanks to the recent Supreme Court, in Amerca it is $1, 1 vote.

  135. Too bad those 75% don’t and didn’t vote. Whereas all of Trump’s 38% did.

  136. Ryan said: “We’re going to have to get back next year at entitlement reform, which is how you tackle the debt and the deficit.” Start by terminating & clawing-back lifelong pensions and benefits for Congress past and present, federal employees and staffers who aided and abetted them. Due to their self-interest, self-dealing and gross mismanagement of our economy we are in this mess. They should have thoughtfully addressed these issues decades earlier. Rather, they kicked the can down the road, not to lose votes. Then let’s get the pensions and benefits from guy like Flynn, Petraeus, Weiner, and the cast characters who betrayed our county or us. Then the fraud/overbilling by doctors and pharma, and the lobbyists and companies who lined the pockets of Politicians to charge retail prices. Hopefully, additional claw-backs and prosecutions. Then lets’ talk about the rest of US! Now that’s a workable plan! We must find a way to hold self-interested Politicians and their staffers, from both parties, personally liable, responsible and accountable for the lies they have told US, their gross mismanagement of our county, our $20.6 T and growing national debt (108% of GDP), and our $100 T in future, unfunded liabilities they forced on US jeopardizing our economic and national security, while benefiting themselves, their staffers, their party and special interest donors. http://www.usdebtforum.com https://www.facebook.com/USDebtForum/ https://twitter.com/USDebtForum

  137. I looked at the accounting of the hearings held this year in the Senate Finance Committee related to tax reform and this is what I found: 5/25 – A hearing titled “FY 2018 Budget proposals for Treasury and Tax Reform.” One witness: Sec Mnuchin; Hearing lasted: 2:16 7/18 – A hearing titled “Comprehensive Tax Reform: Prospects and Challenges.” Witnesses: 4 former assistants secretary for tax policy (Treasury Department). Time: 3:30 9/14 – “Individual Tax Reform” For 2:55 there was testimony from two fellows at the American Enterprise Institute, a VP of a real estate group, and a NYU professor of law and public policy. 9/19 – “Business Tax Reform” lasted 2:07 Witnesses: from Real Estate Roundtable, a big CPAs group, Urban Institute fellow, somebody from the tax foundation. 10/3 – “International Tax Reform” Witnesses: three lawyers and an economist; 2:39 From 11/13 to 11/16 there were executive open sessions with no witness testimony. THAT WAS IT for hearings in the Senate. Total of 12h 47 min, two hours of which were spent with Mnuchin. House Ways and Means had even fewer hearings and less testimony. Remember that the actual Tax Cuts and Jobs Act was not introduced in the House until 11/2. Prior to that it seems that everyone was working from the Trump one-pager he was handing out. I reject the claim that all parties had an opportunity to have their say and to participate in deliberations.

  138. Does anyone think the tax code will be simpler after all of this? The thousands of pages of corporate loopholes are unchanged. They just added another 400 pages of gobbledygook. How do you know when a Republican is lying? His lips are moving.

  139. Yep, the Republicans are putting the final touches on a bill that would raise our deficit by $1.5 trillion. Cutting taxes on the wealthy, and raising taxes for the poor and middle class Americans - you and I. And at the same time, they announce because the deficit is now too high, they need to cut Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid. They safety net that middle class and poor Americans desperately need. Is anyone surprised at the Republican hypocracy? And the greed? We simply MUST get off our butts and vote the Republicans out of office as a matter of self-survival.

  140. Dear Republicans, How's that postcard tax filing thing working out for you? So much for simplifying the tax code.

  141. while these people work feverishly to devastate NY, CA and other blue states, dems remained transfixed by Al Franken.

  142. Hey, there wasn't much left to destroy that the Republicans were not destroying on their own. As you probably heard, the Democrats were just being opportunistic.

  143. To all Dreamers...Canada will welcome you with open arms. If Trump's America is too racists and willingly oblivious to facts to see that Dreamers are educated hard working people who want to willingly contribute to a better society and life for their family, then please join us. We are just like America only without Republican extremists and Right Wing propaganda and baggage. Canada actually likes diversity, we know that it makes us stronger and smarter.

  144. This horrendous bill will become law. It was designed to stick it to every last blue state worker. Red states will make out like bandits and will continue to spew their hate towards the blue state that pay their bills. Time for all blue states to secede. We have no other option the Confederacy won the war and now they are doing everything in their gerrymandered power to harm blue state workers. Enough is enough! RESISTANCE IS NOT FUTILE!

  145. Try selling this debris to the people who voted these clowns in, and now come the sticker shock...in 2 months.

  146. How to reconcile awful and terrible, hmm...

  147. When was the last time you heard a Republican use the word "infrastructure"? Sorry, no money left.

  148. ...and the GOP propaganda machine is in full war mode now, playing not only on Fox "News" but also spreading the lies about this bill as benefitting the middle class on MSNBC. I guess being Republican these days means being a liar, whether one is credible or not. Two abortive "healthcare" bills which mask removing healthcare from over 22 million fellow Americans are really genocide by other means against a rather wide spectrum of victim groups. We've seen what is now GOP values before--in the infamous propaganda film about Terezin made to mislead the Swiss Red Cross--and the world--about what they had known for two years: extermination of six million human beings. Here in America, we do this on the cheap through malign neglect and with far more victims.

  149. Rather than spending our tax dollars on important items the GOP would like to present us with a fake set of tax breaks that will end in 7-10 years for us but continue for corporations and the rich. They want to slash programs that help the constituents they profess to care about because the debt will increase due to the tax breaks they are giving us. We need a functioning government. We need a better health care system. We need to be able to take care of our retirees, our handicapped, our citizens in short. But the GOP doesn't see us as part of their constituency or as real citizens. Their version of real citizens are the people, organizations, and corporations that give them money, that lobby them for favorable legislation, that flatter their egos at dinner or other events. They have no idea what life has become for most of us. If they had to survive a week the way we have to survive a year they'd be dead.

  150. The opportunity to hurt the poor and further enrich the rich will not be waisted. Moreover, the "conservatives" now owning the Republican party will delight in weakening America for the long term- Putin demands it.

  151. How about a gradual reduction in corporate tax rates, how about spreading the cuts to truly benefit the middle class and poor, how about leaving the estate tax alone, how about leaving the mortgage interest deduction at $1 million, how about allowing reasonable deductions for state and local taxes, and how about working with the other side of aisle to achieve these things. McConnell and Ryan are the biggest hypocrites to ever hold office. 8 long years of obstruction and complaining about not being included and what do they do upon being given the keys to the kingdom? Lock out the opposition.

  152. This bill is a scam. Before any changes to the current system is made, Trump should have to show us his taxes to prove he's not gaming the system. Carried interest is what he said he was going to do away with and its still here.

  153. Ten months should be more than enough time for the truth about this craven partisan sellout of the country to greedy donors to become apparent to all, despite the miasma of lies Republicans will surely spew. Next year will be a crucial one for Democrats. If they can't drive the Party of the Rich out of controlling Congress, that's effectively the end of the United States as we know it. Republicans will become the de facto Ruling Party of a one-party plutocracy, empowered to realize their donors' vision of a feudal system in which a handful of donors own all the nation's wealth and are the lords of 350 million disposable serfs. The "tax overhaul" is a long-desired step in that direction, creating a deficit that enables the donors' even more coveted goal of dismantling every social program and worker empowerment measure enacted since the beginning of the 20th century. The return to the Gilded Age of robber barons is then the final step before the ideal state of feudalism. If Democrats can't convince a majority of voters that they offer a better future than than that, they truly deserve to be cast upon the ash heap of history.

  154. As one who has consistently tried to listen carefully and be open to an honest principled argument from a position with which I disagree, it is hard to take the still only partially known, but already evidently self serving GOP tax initiative as anything but hypocritical. I never had much expectation that the Majority Leader was principled but thought Speaker Ryan at least had personal principles even if his positions were flawed. No longer. The GOP has thrown in the towel on any ethics or moral principle. For them there is no truth but the will to “win”.

  155. “We’re going to have to get back next year at entitlement reform, which is how you tackle the debt and the deficit,” the speaker of the House, Paul D. Ryan, Republican of Wisconsin, said on Wednesday during an interview with the radio host Ross Kaminsky. Hmmm...one way to make tackling that deficit might be to not add 1.5 trillion dollars to it right before you start. But deficits seem only to matter when they can be blamed on poor people (in the case of Mr. Ryan, by someone who benefited greatly from the very programs he derides).

  156. The Demcratic 2018 campaign slogan will be "Protect Social Security and Medicare, Vote Democratic!"

  157. Tax Reform, when all is said and done, would be good for the country. Remember, PERFECTION IS THE ENEMY OF GOOD.

  158. This bill is not "tax reform." Rather, it is just tax cuts for the favored constituents of the Republican Party. Actual tax reform would consider the favored treatment (retained in this bill) for passive income such as capital gains, dividends, and carried interest. And it would repeal the step-up basis for inherited assets. But apparently these tax policies and loopholes - popular with the G.O.P. - were off limits for reform.

  159. ALL 13 Republican House Reps (RHRs) in California, ALL 7 in New York, and 4 out of 5 if not all 5 in New Jersey should vote against this bill thus kill it as that'd be a 218-217 or 219-216 vote against it as all 194 Democratic House Reps are against it. Any and every RHR from one of these three states who votes for the tax bill is voting for no local, state, or property tax deductions for their constituents thus begging to be voted out of office by their constituents. We need an eternal CA/NY/NJ Dem firewall in the House for at least a 219-216 Dem majority plus as many DHRs elsewhere as possible to neutralize the second half of Trump's first and I think final term (ideally the magical 290 for the two-thirds vote in the House required for Trump's impeachment and a vote to remove him in the Senate : ) All a Dem has to promise to get Republican votes is this: "Elect me and I will vote to restore local, state, and property tax deductions." That's it, game over for the Republican party.

  160. I'm starting to make plans to get to know my local emergency room doctors. I'm sure I'm going to be seeing them often.

  161. While the Democrats (yet again) forfeit a chance to highlight all the bad aspects of these bills and instead spend their efforts in self-destructive activities, the Republicans are busy making hay -- further mischief -- in the absence of any real opposition. You've got to hand it to the Repubs -- they know how to seize and exercise power. Too bad the Dems seem unwilling or unable to do so! And let the nation down (again!) in the process.

  162. What's unfortunate is that most Americans, and I believe this includes our elected officials, don't know all of what's contained in this sloppily composed tax plan. Perhaps if we all knew about/understood the crazy cuts for golf course owners and real estate moguls, impact on medical insurance, then we would be jumping up and down with fury. When it's inconvenient to be concerned about the deficit, the Republicans look the other way. This is slipshod leadership and simply a disgrace.

  163. And here we have the Republican one-two punch, all aimed at punishing the non wealthy and creating more wealth for the 1%. This is their value system, none of it surprising, except in their ability to fool many millions of people.

  164. Hitting Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security has been their ultimate goal all along and they have lied their way to get there. Many of my Republican "friends" who bought into their lies are headed into retirement in 5-6 years, had planned on Medicare and Social Security and have no clue they are about to be screwed by the guy they bought into. Unlike them, I will not need those social safety net programs and while I will not weep for them, I worry about the world Trump and the GOP will leave my children and grandchildren. At some point, the impact of the national debt, tax cuts for the rich and loss of social safety nets will dawn on those that voted Republican and they will blame Democrats for allowing them to vote stupid....