After months releasing vague outlines and broad plans, Republicans have finally unveiled the legislative text of a tax reform bill.
House Republicans released their bill Thursday morning — one day after they initially said they would.
It’s not the final product, they say. Far from it.
But it’s a proposal that radically cuts the corporate taxes, collapses individual tax rates seven to four brackets, and substantially expands the standard deduction and child tax credit for individuals.
The bill reduced the corporate tax rate to 20 percent from 35 percent, expands the child tax credit from $1,000 to $1,600, caps the state and local property tax deduction at $10,000, leaves retirement savings accounts unchanged, and reduces the tax rate for small businesses to 25 percent.
Republicans, frantically hoping to pass tax reform by Christmas — for fear that their first year controlling both Congress and the White House will come to an end with no major legislative victories — have spent weeks debating behind closed doors and avoiding the tough decisions.
This bill is House Republicans’ opening bid on tax reform, a proposal that will likely undergo a lot scrutiny from the party, and outside interests, in the coming days. The Senate is expected to release its own version of the bill as soon as next week. Then Republicans must come to an agreement between the two chambers.
Overhauling the nation’s tax code comes with a lot of winners and losers, and as Obamacare repeal already showed, Republicans can’t just expect their members to fall in line on a major agenda item. The party is unified in its goal to cut taxes, but has been struggling within its ranks over how deeply to lower rates and whether to pay for the tax cuts.