Lawmakers pledge bipartisan support for pairing tax reform, infrastructure spending

Lawmakers pledge bipartisan support for pairing tax reform, infrastructure spending
© Greg Nash

A group of roughly 40 House Democrats and Republicans pledged support on Tuesday for bipartisan tax reform efforts that would be combined with infrastructure investments.

Reps. Josh Gottheimer (D-N.J.) and Tom Reed (R-N.Y.), the co-chairmen of the Problem Solvers Caucus, said that tying infrastructure funding to tax reform would help draw bipartisan support.

“We believe smart, targeted infrastructure investment tied to a tax reform package could garner significant bipartisan support,” they said in a joint statement. “This would be a win for the American people by delivering a lower competitive tax rate regime producing growth, while at the same time fixing our crumbling infrastructure without burdening future generations.”

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The move from the leaders of the bipartisan caucus stands in contrast to the House GOP’s efforts to partially repeal and replace the healthcare law, which was pushed through without any buy-in from Democrats.

Business-minded Democrats have expressed more inclination to work with Republicans on tax reform this year, a divergence from the party’s steadfast opposition to any measure that repeals the 2010 healthcare law.

The Trump administration has floated pairing infrastructure investment with tax reform, but hope for the idea had been fading on Capitol Hill in recent weeks.

The Trump administration’s one-page tax proposal released in late April didn’t include funding to invest in roads, bridges and other infrastructure. 

Moreover, some conservatives, such as Americans for Tax Reform President Grover Norquist, warn that tying the two policy initiatives together could make it harder to cut taxes and that Republicans don’t need Democratic help to pass tax reform.