More Congressional Republicans Say They Hate Their Tax Bill But Plan To Vote For It Anyway
For most Republicans in Congress, passing a tax bill isn’t about what is good for America. It is about getting a win and pleasing their donor base.
More Congressional Republicans spoke up against the tax bill Tuesday but none of them was willing to go on record as saying they will vote against it when it hits the floor of both chambers.
Texas senator and former presidential candidate Ted Cruz said raising taxes on voters in states like California and New York was “a mistake” and California Republican Darryl Issa said he wasn’t very happy with the tax bill in its current form, even though he still plans to eventually vote for it.
“The way it’s being structured, it’s unfair to California,” Issa said. “In its current form, it clearly raises taxes on some people, including in my state.” Asked if he still intends to vote for passage, Rep. Issa shook his head in the affirmative.
Moderate New York Republican Rep. John Katko, the newly elected co-chairman of the moderate Tuesday Group admitted the tax bill is good for businesses but not so much for individual tax payers – but still intends to vote for final passage, even though he said he is currently undecided.
“I’m undecided. We just want to see how the final bill shapes out. … On the business side, [it’s] all good,” he said Tuesday before adding that he has concerns with the bill authors’ decision to lower or remove state and local tax (SALT) deductions that are popular in California, New York and New Jersey, among other states.
“The way it’s being structured, it’s unfair to California,” Issa said. “In its current form, it clearly raises taxes on some people, including in my state.”
“At first glance, it looks like it’s not as bad as I thought,” Rep. Katko said of the SALT impact. But “until I get the final numbers, I can’t make a final determination.”
Rep. Tom MacArthur of New Jersey, an earlier opponent of the tax bill due to the SALT provisions said he has changed his mind and now leans towards a “yes” vote citing a compromise he reached with GOP House leadership preserving state and local property tax deduction of up to $10,000.
“I am in the yes column,” MacArthur told the media Tuesday. “This is going to be good for the state of New Jersey. I’ll continue to work to make it better, but I intend to support the bill.
He added: “Nobody has demonstrated to me that taxes go up.”
Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.), a member of the far-right House Freedom Caucus said he is an “undecided leaning yes.” He said he was pushing the leadership to make further changes to the bill like increasing the mortgage deduction cap to $750,000, allowing it to apply to second homes and linking it to inflation.
He said he will still vote “yes” even if GOP House leadership fails to incorporate his requests in the final bill.
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