U.S. Senate Republicans will grapple on Friday with the possibility of adding a tax increase to sweeping legislation meant to cut taxes on businesses and individuals, aiming to win support from fiscal conservatives anxious about the bill's impact on the federal deficit.
As for the Senate's deficit hawk holdouts, primarily Sen. Corker, along with Flake and Johnson, threatened to hold up the bill on Thursday after the Senate parliamentarian ruled that his "trigger" proposal ― which would have brought back certain taxes if the government failed to meet specific revenue targets ― could not be included in the reconciliation bill.
"It's like what one of my colleagues said about the CBO: the one thing you know is that they're always going to be wrong", GOP whip John Cornyn (R-TX) told reporters. The group describes its mission as reforming the tax code "by reducing the corporate income tax rate to make it more competitive with our nation's major trading partners". "I wish we could have done more for working families by making that credit refundable, but we did lay the groundwork for future pro-family tax reform and I am confident we will get there soon".
With a mandatory 20 hours of Senate debate nearing expiration, the Republican lawmakers, who control the chamber, could move to a final vote late in the day after a procedural vote starting at 11 a.m. EST (1600 GMT) and a potentially chaotic "vote-a-rama" on tax bill amendments offered by both Republicans and Democrats.
The bill the House passed last month differs in several ways from the Senate version.More news: Prosecutors seek to seize assets of 'Pharma Bro' Shkreli
More news: Biodiesel Industry Disappointed With RFS Volumes Set by EPA
More news: After flirting with Tennessee, Dave Doeren gets new deal at NC State
Democrats derided the bill as a GOP gift to its wealthy and business backers at the expense of lower-earning people.
"Because the bill was given to lobbyists to read and change before senators saw it, and because the bill was given to us on a few hours" notice and has not been read fully or considered fully by a single senator, I move we adjourn until Monday so we can first read and then clean up this terrible piece of legislation, ' Schumer said. He said he looks forward to signing a bill before Christmas. They had rounds of closed-door meetings and were drafting the revised bill text up to the time they assembled on the Senate floor in advance of the vote.
AARP, the retired persons lobby, is opposed the Senate bill, charging that cuts and rising debt will force Congress to cut Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid to offset the loss of tax revenue. "We have done it and we're ready to go", she said.
Sen. Steve Daines, R-Mont., backed the package Wednesday after securing an increase in the deduction for business income from 17.4 percent to 20 percent. That change would match the House bill.
The bill gives a massive tax cut to corporations and repeals parts of Obamacare, with predictions it could leave millions of American's without health insurance.