This is the list of U.S. Senators and their approval ratings by the voters before the Tax Bill is voted upon this coming week. Please click on this link.
U.S. Senator Approval Ratings 2017 Before The Tax Bill Vote
These are the men and women who will decide if this bill, which was finally shown to the opposition party late Friday evening for the first time, will be passed. It will add an estimated $1.5 Trillion to the deficit. The corporate tax rate will be reduced from 35% to 21%. While more than 13 million will lose their health benefits. According to Richard Frank, Professor of health economics at the Harvard Kennedy School, ‘The evidence that exists suggests that in the near term, the individual health insurance market would experience further disruptions. The Congressional Budget Office estimates a reduction in the insured population by 4 million people in 2019, and 13 million by 2027.’ Overall, the tax plan would reduce the government’s role in health care (and potentially trigger future cuts to Medicaid and Medicare). What seems to have been forgotten is what this bill will do to the elderly of the nation.
It also includes new limits on other tax breaks, including the mortgage interest deduction and the state and local tax deduction. The bill prohibits taxpayers from prepaying next year’s state and local income taxes, in order to deduct them from 2017 taxes. That form of tax planning would have allowed taxpayers to benefit more from the full state and local deduction this year before it is capped next year.
The bill also has additional tax relief for the owners of engineering and architectural firms and the elimination of a change in capital gains treatment of homes sales, a key priority for the real estate industry. These are your lobbyists at work. The owners of engineering and architectural firms get tax breaks and the elderly on fixed income sees increases everywhere.
The 2025 expiration date for the individual tax cuts remains, as does the estate tax. At the core of the bill are large tax cuts for corporations and other businesses. It is said that this will create jobs, investment and economic growth. It can be said that this is trickle-down economics.
Thus far, only Senators Flake & Collins still have reservations. If they decide to vote against the bill, that would leave it up to the two Senators who are ill to create a tie and have the Vice President decide the issue. Senator Thad Cochran (R) Mississippi had a non-melanoma lesion removed from his nose earlier this week. Unless he objects to be seen with a bandage on his nose, he will vote for the bill. And Senator John McCain (R) Arizona is being treated for the side effects of brain cancer treatment at Bethesda Naval Hospital. If either can’t make it, the bill could be defeated. If they both show up, and Senators Flake & Collins vote against it, once again it will be up to the great Vietnam Naval war warrior, who flew off the Oriskany in sealing his fate toward the freedom of the nation, to decide the fate of the country. If you have read Zalin Grant’s article ‘The Day John McCain Got Shot Down’ (http://bit.ly/2CImhuF), there is great drama ahead. Will he have the fortitude to do the right thing? Or will he be the A4 pilot who rarely followed the rules?
Does it get any more dramatic than that?
Photo Credit:AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite