Brady makes the case for revenue-neutral tax reform

Brady makes the case for revenue-neutral tax reform
© Greg Nash

House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin BradyKevin BradyOvernight Finance: CBO to release limited analysis of ObamaCare repeal bill | DOJ investigates Equifax stock sales | House weighs tougher rules for banks dealing with North Korea Week ahead in finance: Clock ticking for GOP on tax reform Liberal groups want Mnuchin off GOP tax group following airplane controversies MORE (R-Texas) made the case for revenue-neutral tax reform on Wednesday, following a report that some advisers to President Trump and lawmakers are potentially interested in enacting tax cuts that aren't offset.

"I believe, both the most pro-growth approach we can take, and the fiscally responsible approach we can take, is to break even with the budget, counting on just solid, verifiable economic growth," he said at a Financial Services Roundtable event.

Politico reported Wednesday that some Trump aides are questioning the need for tax reform to maintain current revenue levels. Sen. Rand PaulRandal (Rand) Howard PaulSenate Dems hold floor talk-a-thon against latest ObamaCare repeal bill Overnight Defense: Senate passes 0B defense bill | 3,000 US troops heading to Afghanistan | Two more Navy officials fired over ship collisions Lawmakers grapple with warrantless wiretapping program MORE (R-Ky.) has also advocated for tax cuts that aren't paid for.

A tax-reform bill that increases the deficit would contrast with goals expressed by GOP congressional leaders. Both House Speaker Paul RyanPaul RyanRyan: Graham-Cassidy 'best, last chance' to repeal ObamaCare Ryan: Americans want to see Trump talking with Dem leaders Overnight Finance: CBO to release limited analysis of ObamaCare repeal bill | DOJ investigates Equifax stock sales | House weighs tougher rules for banks dealing with North Korea MORE (R-Wis.) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellSenate passes 0B defense bill Overnight Health Care: New GOP ObamaCare repeal bill gains momentum Overnight Finance: CBO to release limited analysis of ObamaCare repeal bill | DOJ investigates Equifax stock sales | House weighs tougher rules for banks dealing with North Korea MORE (R-Ky.) have said they want tax reform to be revenue-neutral. A revenue-neutral bill would be easier to pass under budget reconciliation, which allows bills to clear the Senate with only 50 votes.

Trump's Treasury secretary nominee, Steven Mnuchin, has also said he thinks tax reform shouldn't increase the deficit.

Brady said lawmakers have been having "terrific discussions" with Trump's team about tax reform, and the revenue-neutrality issue is part of the discussion.

The House Republican blueprint that the Ways and Means Committee is working to turn into legislation is intended to be revenue-neutral after accounting for economic growth. Brady said that the plan would result in lost tax revenue in the early years of implementation but would make up for those losses later on, so it would break even within the 10-year budget window.

"After that, it creates significant revenue going forward, which helps us with our debt and deficits," he said.