Senators nearing deal on budget’s tax provisions

Senators nearing deal on budget’s tax provisions
© Greg Nash
Members of the Senate Budget Committee say they are close to an agreement on a budget deal that would pave the way for tax reform, which could include a provision for a $1.5 trillion tax cut over the course of a decade.
“We’ll have something for you a little later today,” Sen. Pat ToomeyPatrick (Pat) Joseph ToomeyTop GOP candidate drops out of Ohio Senate race Newly declassified memos detail extent of improper Obama-era NSA spying Overnight Tech: FCC won't fine Colbert over Trump joke | Trump budget slashes science funding | Net neutrality comment period opens MORE (R-Pa.), a member of the panel, said Tuesday following meetings with fellow committee member Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerPentagon: War in Afghanistan will cost billion in 2018 K.T. McFarland officially withdrawn as nominee for ambassador K.T. McFarland withdraws as nominee for ambassador MORE (R-Tenn.) and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellDems confront Kelly after he calls some immigrants 'lazy' McConnell: 'Whoever gets to 60 wins' on immigration Overnight Defense: Latest on spending fight - House passes stopgap with defense money while Senate nears two-year budget deal | Pentagon planning military parade for Trump | Afghan war will cost B in 2018 MORE (R-Ky.).
Toomey had been pushing for $2 trillion in cuts to be included in the resolution.
“Corker and Toomey probably represent the far end of the spectrum within our conference of what they want to see that look like, and the fact that they’re getting together leads me to believe that we’re close to getting a budget that they can put out of committee and we can consider on the floor,” said Sen. John ThuneJohn Randolph ThuneOvernight Tech: Uber exec says 'no justification' for covering up hack | Apple considers battery rebates | Regulators talk bitcoin | SpaceX launches world's most powerful rocket Apple tells senator it may give rebates to consumers who bought iPhone batteries Republican agenda clouded by division MORE (S.D.), the No. 3 Senate Republican.
Earlier in the day, Corker had told reporters that they had reached a tentative agreement.
It remains unclear, however, whether the budget will be marked up by the committee or simply taken directly to the Senate floor as a “shell,” which simply contains the instructions for the tax reform process. That process, known as reconciliation, would allow Senate Republicans to pass tax reform without facing a Democratic filibuster.
If the committee does agree to the massive tax cuts, it would limit the shelf life of any tax reform. Parliamentary rules restrict policy passed through reconciliation from adding to the deficit over the course of a decade, which would put an expiration date on the tax cuts.
Toomey has argued that the window — typically 10 years — could be widened to keep the policies in place for a longer period of time.