Paul Manafort and Rick Gates’ indictments don’t change the fact that Republicans are still desperate to pass tax cuts for the wealthy—if anything, congressional Republicans are probably in even more of a hurry knowing that special counsel Robert Mueller is moving in such a substantial way on people with serious ties to Donald Trump. But that doesn’t mean Republicans have a workable tax plan yet.
“We have no details,” said Rep. Chris Collins (R-N.Y.). “All anyone wants to talk about, especially the business people and so forth, is the tax reform. And I can’t tell them anything, because I have no details. . . . I’ve been very frustrated that all I can say is, ‘It’s going to be good for the economy.’ ”
And that’s a Republican. Democrats have been excluded from discussions on the tax cuts.
Having conversations with top tax-planning Republicans doesn’t mean you’ll be happy, though. The National Association of Home Builders is opposing the Republican plan as it currently stands:
That’s because one day before, House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Tex.) informed NAHB that he would not be including a homeownership tax credit as part of the new tax legislation, which will be released on Wednesday.
NAHB’s chief executive, Jerry Howard, had spent months working on this new tax provision with Brady’s aides, but House leaders wouldn’t allow its inclusion, Howard was told. The next day, Howard and other NAHB officials gathered on a conference call and debated what to do. They agreed unanimously — kill the bill.
The NAHB has members all around the country, so any given member of Congress could feel pressure from them, and the National Association of Realtors is not happy with the plan, either. Both those groups are likely to be joined by many, many, many people unhappy with plans to change how retirement savings are taxed. But Republicans are not giving up or giving in—they’re determined to provide those sweet, sweet tax cuts for corporations and the very wealthy.
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