Rep. Pascrell: GOP Tax Bill is a Middle Class Tax Increase
Yesterday, U.S. Representative Bill Pascrell, Jr. (NJ-09), a member of the Ways and Means Committee, led the charge for Democrats in their opposition to the Ryan-McConnell tax bill. The House Ways and Means Committee began its markup for the Republican tax bill, which will continue today (WATCH LIVE).
Changes to House tax bill on child care benefits, credits (Associated Press / Washington Post)
Committee Democrats are raising objections, especially to the bill’s limits on deductions for homeowners and the repeal of the child adoption credit and the deduction for medical expenses.
Democrats criticized new, tighter requirements in Brady’s amendment for access to the earned income tax credit, including stricter documenting of children and their ages. They insisted it’s a valued tax break for working people of modest income that provides an incentive to remain employed.
“We’re not talking about fraud here,” said Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J. “We’re zeroing in on fraud that doesn’t exist.”
But Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr., a Paterson Democrat and committee member, said he was not hopeful about much success, even though he believes members of the opposite party might agree with him.
"These guys aren’t going to accept any of our amendments. They never talked to us in the first place," said Pascrell. "This bill is a fraud. Most Republicans I talk to are embarrassed by it. They know in the end the math doesn't add up."
New York, California and other high-tax states would be hard hit by the removal of that deduction, a fact seized upon by Democrats to bolster their argument that Trump’s plan is a gift to the wealthiest Americans and the corporate sector.
“There are a lot of people expecting a tax cut who will be big losers under this bill,” Representative Bill Pascrell of New Jersey, a Democrat on the House Ways and Means Committee, said as the tax-writing panel convened to consider the bill.
"Taxes would rise for many of the working class, and fall for the richest Americans," said Rep. Bill Pascrell, D-N.J.
While the U.S. Chamber of Commerce is pushing to pass the bill, Pascrell noted that the New Jersey Chamber issued a statement saying it could not support it.
"The tax code is rife with loopholes and complicated deductions that need to be simplified," said Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr., D-9th Dist., the only New Jersey lawmaker on the panel. "Simplifying the code and eliminating or curtailing the major deductions that middle class families rely on in order to finance a windfall for corporations and the top 1 percent are two very different things."
Here’s Where the GOP Tax Bill Stands Right Now (Bloomberg News)
House Democrats lambasted Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady for introducing a series of last-minute revisions to the GOP tax bill, including extending the time period for investment managers to qualify for the carried interest tax break. Democratic lawmakers complained that the provisions were adopted by the committee in a 24-16 party-line vote before anyone had time to review them.
“This is America. This ain’t Moscow!” Democrat Bill Pascrell of New Jersey said after Brady introduced the amendment.
Rep. Bill Pascrell said the bill will hurt future generations.
"This is not a middle class tax cut, it's a tax increase," he said. "It increases the deficit, and that's going to be a bigger burden than the tax cuts in 2001 and 2003 on our children and grandchilden.
GOP inserts newer amendments into its tax bill (Washington Times)
Democrats, though, said the GOP was using gimmicks to tamp down the already high cost of the bill — some $1.5 trillion in new deficits over the next decade — and said the middle class will end up paying.
“I don’t care whether you live in Dakota [or] Jersey,” said Rep. Bill Pascrell Jr., New Jersey Democrat. “This thing is really shafting everybody. It’s an equal-opportunity shafter, this bill.”