While Sen. Rand Paul of Kentucky has expressed skepticism over the GOP’s tax framework, fearing it could raise taxes on the middle class, members of the conservative House Freedom Caucus are still optimistic Republicans will craft a plan to bring down rates and stimulate the economy.
Paul took to social media Monday to voice his concerns about the proposal, citing a recent analysis released by the Tax Policy Center projecting middle-income earners could potentially face a 30 percent increase. But conservatives in the lower chamber argue it’s premature to project how the legislation — which has yet to be crafted — will impact the different brackets.
“I think Rand was looking at numbers that were put out by a left-leaning group, and so it’s way too early to suggest that taxes are going to go up on any particular group,” House Freedom Caucus Chairman Mark Meadows told The Daily Caller News Foundation Tuesday. “Obviously, we’ve yet to set the thresholds in terms of income levels, so hopefully as is the plan gets put together a little bit more in detail we’ll be able to all come together and embrace it.”
GOP Rep. Dave Brat of Virginia said he’s “still favorable” about what has been proposed so far, adding they need to ensure the plan makes good on their promise to ease the tax burden and stimulate growth as they iron out the details.
“The concern is real — we don’t know enough to say with certainty whether that’s the case or not,” he told TheDCNF. “But I hope our leadership will come up with a pretty solid position that anyone under $100,000 will see a tax reduction, not an increase.”
Brat said its been decades since the middle class has seen dramatic growth, which is ultimately what the party is trying to achieve.
“Wages will go up. Your paycheck goes up. Your retirement account goes up,” he continued. “People aren’t used to that. But it would be politically very problematic if we increase taxes on anybody in the middle class while we say it’s a middle-class tax cut.”
Republican Rep. Mark Sanford said members have been attending planning session to get a better sense of what is in the works, adding “the devil is in the details on this one.”
“People are hedging their bets because they don’t know,” he told TheDCNF. “I’m trying to learn more — as to a lot of the particulars, I’m still in the research and find mode.”
Republicans are looking to have tax reform passed by the end of the year.
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