Senate vote on tax cut looms next week

Senate vote on tax cut looms next week
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Senate leaders are planning a floor vote on the GOP tax reform measure potentially as soon as Thursday, according to Bloomberg News.

Majority Leader Mitch McConnellAddison (Mitch) Mitchell McConnellGOP lambasts Trump over performance in Helsinki Overnight Defense: Washington reeling from Trump, Putin press conference Feehery: The long game MORE (R-Ky.) has long said he intended to have the $1.4-trillion package of tax cuts on the floor the week after Thanksgiving — a timeline intended to get the measure to President Trump’s desk before the end of the year.

Republicans have struggled to give Trump a signature legislative achievement to sign his name to during the first year of his presidency, after several failed attempts to unravel Obamacare, and the pressure is on now.

But the GOP must hold together a razor-thin 52-vote majority in order to overcome the united opposition of Democrats, who argue that the bill only benefits wealthy Americans.

The House passed its version of the legislation last week — featuring several marked differences from the Senate bill — but its victory in the upper chamber is by no means certain.

Several Republican senators — like Sens. Bob CorkerRobert (Bob) Phillips CorkerGOP lambasts Trump over performance in Helsinki Flake to introduce resolution countering Trump's Russia summit rhetoric Corker: Trump made US look 'like a pushover' MORE (Tenn.), Jeff FlakeJeffrey (Jeff) Lane FlakeGOP senator: Senate should be 'disgusted' by Helsinki summit Flake to introduce resolution countering Trump's Russia summit rhetoric Senate GOP poised to break record on Trump's court picks MORE (Ariz.), James LankfordJames Paul LankfordJuan Williams: Putin wins as GOP spins Senators seek data on tax law's impact on charitable giving GOP senators introduce resolution endorsing ICE MORE (Okla.) and John McCainJohn Sidney McCainGOP lambasts Trump over performance in Helsinki Trump stuns the world at Putin summit NY Daily News cover following Helsinki summit shows Trump shooting Uncle Sam MORE (Ariz.) — have raised concerns about the $1.4 trillion that the Joint Committee on Taxation says the bill will add to the federal deficit, contrary to supporters’ claims that the tax cuts will generate enough economic growth to pay for themselves.

Sen. Ron JohnsonRonald (Ron) Harold JohnsonJuan Williams: Putin wins as GOP spins GOP senator: Harley-Davidson is right to move some production overseas GOP senator: Trump’s policies doing 'permanent damage' MORE (R-Wis.) has raised objections to the way the bill treats small businesses. Sen. Susan CollinsSusan Margaret CollinsThis week: GOP mulls vote on ‘abolish ICE’ legislation Dem infighting erupts over Supreme Court pick McConnell: Senate to confirm Kavanaugh by Oct. 1 MORE (R-Maine) has taken issue with a provision repealing the so-called “individual mandate” in Obamacare. (Senate tax writers are leaning on cutting the mandate as a critical part of funding the tax cuts.)

Sen. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiThis week: GOP mulls vote on ‘abolish ICE’ legislation Dem infighting erupts over Supreme Court pick McConnell: Senate to confirm Kavanaugh by Oct. 1 MORE (R-Alaska), who had previously expressed reservations, provided a boost to the bill’s chances this week when she said that she would support axing the individual mandate.

GOP leaders can afford to lose only two votes before the legislation sinks.

If the bill clears the Senate by Thursday — a dramatic moment that is likely to come after marathon debate — the two chambers will have to hammer out discrepancies in the legislation.

Major differences include timing and permanence of the tax cuts — something House Speaker Paul RyanPaul Davis RyanGOP lambasts Trump over performance in Helsinki Trump stuns the world at Putin summit Former Trump aide says he canceled CNN appearance over 'atrocious' Helsinki coverage MORE (R-Wis.) has blamed on Senate rules — and its treatment of the Affordable Care Act.

The tax bill “needs work,” Collins said earlier this week, according to Bloomberg. “I think there will be changes.”