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House GOP Paves Way For Tax Reform With Passage Of Budget Resolution


House Republicans narrowly approved a $4.1 trillion budget resolution on Thursday, taking a key step in efforts to pass their tax reform plan.

The House voted 219 to 206 to pass the budget, with all of the votes in favor of the resolution coming from the GOP side of the aisle. Eighteen Republicans joined with all of the Democrats in the chamber in voting against the resolution.

The budget resolution includes major spending cuts but is largely seen as a vehicle for Republicans to enact tax reform.

The bill unlocks the reconciliation process, allowing Republicans to pass tax reform with a simple 51-vote majority in the Senate.

The Senate Budget Committee is expected to pass a similar bill later in the day, with the resolution due to be brought to the Senate floor in two weeks.

Ahead of the vote, House Speaker Paul Ryan, R-Wis., argued the budget resolution needed to be passed so Congress can deliver real relief for middle income families across the country.

"We haven't reformed this tax system since 1986. We need to pass this budget so we can help bring more jobs, fairer taxes, and bigger paychecks for people across this country," Ryan said. "The time for this is now. The opportunity is right in front of us."

Meanwhile, Democrats have accused the GOP of looking to give giant tax breaks to the wealthy and big corporations at the expense of supporting families and growing the economy.

"This budget makes deep cuts to Medicare, Medicaid, and nearly every investment in our future, all so millionaires can walk away with a $230,000 tax cut," said Congressman John Yarmuth, D-Ken.

Yarmuth, the top Democrat on the House Budget Committee, added, "I can't justify that - and I have no idea how my Republican colleagues do."

A Politico/Morning Consult poll released earlier this week showed 48 percent of voters approve of the Republican tax reform plan, while 37 percent disapprove.

Politico noted the most popular elements of the proposal include doubling the standing deduction, reducing the maximum small business tax rate, creating a $500 tax credit for all dependents and increasing the child tax credit.

Meanwhile, the poll showed lower levels of support for reducing the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 20 percent and removing taxes on overseas profits of U.S. companies.

by RTTNews Staff Writer

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