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Trump calls for repeal of ObamaCare mandate, cuts to top tax rate

Trump calls for repeal of ObamaCare mandate, cuts to top tax rate
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President Trump on Monday said the final GOP tax bill should include language repealing ObamaCare's individual mandate and cutting the top individual tax rate to 35 percent.
 
"I am proud of the Rep. House & Senate for working so hard on cutting taxes {& reform.} We’re getting close!" Trump tweeted.
 
"Now, how about ending the unfair & highly unpopular Indiv Mandate in OCare & reducing taxes even further? Cut top rate to 35% w/all of the rest going to middle income cuts?"
Trump, who is currently in the Philippines for the last leg of his 12-day tour of Asia, has repeatedly called for the tax legislation to include a repeal of the individual mandate in recent weeks. Repeal of the mandate is not in either the House or Senate bills, but GOP lawmakers say the issue is still under discussion.
 
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Senate Democratic Leader Charles SchumerCharles (Chuck) Ellis SchumerSunday shows preview: Trump taps acting attorney general to lead Justice Department Pro-Israel organizations should finally seek payback against Iran deal Dems Pelosi: Acting attorney general 'should not be there' MORE (D-N.Y.) criticized Trump's comments in his own statement, saying that the president's core blue-collar, middle class supporters were being sold out.

“The President’s awful idea would take a plan that’s already heavily tilted towards the wealthy and make it even worse," he wrote. "This proposal would send premiums for millions of Americans skyrocketing, all so that the wealthy can get an even bigger tax giveaway than they’d get under the original Republican plan."

Both the House and Senate bills have top individual tax rates above 35 percent. The House bill would keep the top individual rate at 39.6 percent, while the Senate bill lowers the top rate slightly to 38.5 percent.
 
Achieving both of Trump's requests could be a challenge for congressional Republicans. While repealing the individual mandate would produce savings, some lawmakers are weary of mixing health care and tax reform. And cutting the top individual rate could be expensive and help to further Democrats' attacks that Republicans' tax plans are aimed at helping the rich.
 
The House is expected to vote on its bill this week, and the measure appears likely to pass. The Senate Finance Committee will start marking up legislation on Monday afternoon.
 
Under the budget resolution lawmakers are using to prevent Democrats from blocking tax legislation, the bill can't add more than $1.5 trillion to the deficit over 10 years.
 
This story was updated at 12:49 p.m.