Top Republicans in the lower chamber said they are confident they will have an easier time passing tax reform than they did health care, following the release of their bill Thursday.
GOP lawmakers have an ambitious timeline, with House leadership aiming to send the legislation to the Senate by Thanksgiving, giving them just nine legislative days to pass the measure.
North Carolina Rep. Mark Walker, the chairman of the Republican Study Committee, told reporters that he anticipates 230 or more of the 239 Republicans in the House to vote in favor of the bill. By comparison, the House voted 217-213 to pass its Obamacare repeal legislation in May.
“I’m anticipating a big vote. In fact, in a conversation with the speaker and the speaker and some others, I asked the question ‘Any reason that we shouldn’t see 230-plus on this?'” he said. “So, we’re hoping for that.”
House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said he isn’t concerned about a shortage of votes on the measure, adding that he believes there is strong momentum behind the bill.
“I think we’ll have more than enough,” McCarthy told The Daily Caller News Foundation. “Judging based upon the rollout at the conference, and from past experience, there’s much more excitement for this.”
The California Republican cited iPhone supplier Broadcom’s decision to move its legal headquarters to the United States as an example of their policy plans already having a positive impact on the economy.
“That’s the thing about it, you know — here’s a company that said he moved away based upon the policies that America had. And now look at what’s happening, he’s very confident about tax and he’s coming back,” he said.
While the rollout largely received a warm welcome amongst rank-and-file members, a number of Republicans said there is still more work to be done before they can commit to supporting the measure.
Sceptics cited issues with changes to the state and local tax deduction and limits on the pass-through business rate as cause for concern.
New York Rep. Peter King said capping the property tax deduction at $10,000 doesn’t go far enough to get him on board.
“I think the property tax should be open, it should be unlimited,” he told TheDCNF. “And the state income tax should be unlimited for the next few years, then put a $400,000 cap on it in say three or four years — give us time to ease into it.”
The House Committee on Ways and Means is slated to mark up its bill early next week.
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