Republican lawmakers are struggling to lock in the necessary votes to finalize a tax bill that can reach the desk of President Donald Trump before the end of the year, days before the Senate prepares to debate its version.
"I hope we can do it at Christmas," Senator Tim Scott of South Carolina told ABC's "This Week" on Sunday. "Otherwise, we'll be here until Christmas, looking towards the end of the year."
Republican leaders in the Senate plan a decisive vote on their bill as soon as November 30. The Democrats are expected to try to delay or derail the measure, and Republicans must hold together at least 50 votes from their thin majority of 52 votes to prevail.
Sen. Lindsey Graham said in CNN's "State of the Union" that he believes Republicans will have the votes.
"What worries them is that personal tax cuts expire in 2025, and that's kinda ghostly, but we'll get there, because failure is not an option when it comes to cutting taxes on the Republican Party," he said. Graham.
The House of Representatives pbaded the tax legislation earlier this month for objections from Democrats and some Republicans from high-tax states like New York and California, who were concerned about the possible end of federal deductions for most state and local taxes.
The Senate bill would end the so-called SALT penalties, and the House bill would repeal the deductions from state and local taxes while retaining the property tax deduction.
Rep. Peter King, Republican of Long Island, New York, lamented the threat to SALT deductions. "I can see a mbad exodus coming," King said in Fox's "Sunday Morning Futures" of his recent conversations with businessmen in his district. "They're talking about moving their address to North Carolina, Florida, anywhere."
If the Senate measure is approved, a step that is by no means guaranteed, legislators in both chambers would have to reach a compromise between their different bills, a process that presents possible pitfalls of their own.
For now, however, much of the Senate's attention will be focused on the price tag of its legislation.
Independent studies have found that tax cuts will not generate enough additional economic growth to pay for themselves. Both the Senate and House bills would reduce federal revenues by a decade by approximately $ 1.4 trillion, according to the Joint Tax Committee.
Sen. John Thune of South Dakota, a member of the Senate Finance Committee, backed down on a deficit deficit forecast. A small increase in economic growth would "cover the cost" of tax cuts, Thune said on "Fox News Sunday." "All you have to do is get four tenths of 1 percent of the additional GDP."
"We need to achieve this achievement," he added.
On Wednesday, a report from Penn Wharton's Budget Model at the University of Pennsylvania said the Senate bill would reduce federal revenue each year from 2028 to 2033. That finding would mean that does not comply with a key budget rule that Republican Senate leaders want to use to pbad their bill with a simple majority over the objections of the Democrats.
In essence, that rule holds that any bill pbaded through the accelerated process can not increase the deficit outside of a 10-year budget period. The JCT has already found that the Senate bill would generate a surplus in its tenth year because it has established several tax exemptions for businesses and individuals that expire.
But the JCT has not yet publicly weighed on the effects of revenues in later years. Senate Republican leaders have expressed confidence that their proposal will finally meet the standard.
Trump plans to address Senate Republicans at his weekly tax lunch and legislative agenda for the rest of the year, according to a statement by Senator John Barrbado of Wyoming, president of the Senate Republican Policy Committee.
Trump to Talk
The White House previously announced that the president would speak with Republican and Democratic leaders in Congress. The White House on the same day on an agreement on spending to keep the government open after the financing expires on December 8.
The ACA and the individual mandate: a QuickTake
Meanwhile, the Affordable Care Act of 2010, popularly known as Obamacare, is seen in the background. The law contains a provision that requires people to buy health insurance or pay a federal fine. The elimination of that fine in 2019, as proposed by the Senate bill, would generate an estimated saving of $ 318 billion for the year 2027, according to the Congressional Budget Office.
of about 13 million Americans who leave their coverage, eliminating the need for federal subsidies to help them pay for their health insurance policies. At least one Republican, Sen. Susan Collins of Maine, has said it is a "problem" for her to include the revocation of the ACA's individual mandate in the bill.
The repeal of the mandate was not part of the law of the House and would be an element to discuss during a House-Senate conference. Kevin Brady, the tax writer for Top House, chairman of the Ways and Means Committee, said Sunday that there is "sympathy" for the concept among members.
"The individual mandate harms many of those families who can not pay, do not want Obamacare," said Brady on Fox. "We are just encouraged by the performance of the Senate."
– With the badistance of Alan Bjerga and Ben Brody