Wyden-Gregg tax bill comes after lengthy White House consultations

The bipartisan tax bill unveiled today came after lengthy consultation with the White House, Sen. Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) said Tuesday.

Wyden, who released a tax reform and simplification bill this morning along with Sen. Judd Gregg (R-N.H.), said that he'd spoken with White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel and other top White House officials before unveiling his and Gregg's bill.

"I have talked to the White House in length on this," Wyden told reporters, noting that he'd spoken to Emanuel and top economic advisor Austan Goolsbee about the tax reform bill.

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Wyden declined to say whether or not the White House would support his and Gregg's proposal, or elaborate on the contents of those discussions.

The bill is aimed toward lowering the U.S. corporate tax rate while closing some loopholes and exemptions. The legislation would also simplify tax brackets, as well as return forms taxpayers use to file.

Wyden said that he and Gregg had also consulted with Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus's (D-Mont.) staff before releasing their bill.

The two senators expressed optimism that their tax bill could win bipartisan support, especially after several other bipartisan efforts have fallen by the wayside during this Congress.

"It is a proposal that can earn support from both sides of the aisle," Gregg said. "We're willing to push the ball down the road, and we hope it'll pick up speed."

Wyden said that selling the reforms to colleague would hinge on its prospects for spurring job creation.

"Most importantly, at this time, this is a jobs bill," he said.

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