Senate budget committee advances tax plan

By Ed Adamczyk and Danielle Haynes  |  Nov. 28, 2017 at 8:18 AM
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Nov. 28 (UPI) -- Senate Republicans' tax bill is one step closer to being passed Tuesday after the budget committee gave its approval.

The Senate Committee on the Budget voted 12-11 to advance the plan touted by the GOP as a sweeping tax overhaul.

Two Republican members of the committee had said they might vote against the chamber's version of the bill Tuesday -- giving the GOP no room for error in advancing the plan to the floor for a full vote this week. Both voted with their party.

Sen. Ron Johnson, R-Wis., has voiced concern that the bill doesn't have provisions to help small businesses -- and Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., said the bill would lead to federal deficit increases.

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will now move on to the full Senate, which is expected to vote on it Thursday.

A group of Republican senators visited the White House Monday to discuss the plan with President Donald Trump.

Sunday, an 11-page analysis of the Senate plan by the Congressional Budget Office predicted it would raise the deficit by about $1.4 trillion in the next decade. Factoring in adjustments to Medicare, Medicaid and the Affordable Care Act, the analysis said the bill would hit taxpayers earning less than $75,000 per year the hardest, and affect the wealthy the least.

Experts have said the GOP tax plan will likely lead to economic growth. Analyst Shawn Quigg of investment firm JP Morgan Chase said Monday the S&P 500 could rise by 5 percent if the tax bill passes the Senate and becomes law.

"We think the potential passage of tax reform could provide 5 percent near-term upside to the S&P 500. However, the potential upside could be significantly higher for those high-tax stocks poised to outperform in a more tax-friendly regime," Quigg wrote.

Any version of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passed by the Senate would need to be paired with the House's version, which was passed nearly two weeks ago, before Trump can sign it into law. The president and GOP leaders have said they want to sign off on the bill by Christmas. If passed, the plan would initiate the largest overhaul of the U.S. tax code since 1986.

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