House passes tax reform 227-205; most New York and New Jersey Republicans vote no

All politics is local.

The House just passed what it calls the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act by a margin of 227-205.

All the yes votes came from Republicans. In addition to all the Democrats, the 13 House Republicans who voted NO were:

  • Peter King (NY)
  • Lee Zeldin (NY)
  • Dan Donovan (NY)
  • John Faso (NY)
  • Elise Stefanik (NY)
  • Rodney Frelinghuysen (NJ)
  • Christopher Smith (NJ)
  • Leonard Lance (NJ)
  • Frank LoBiondo (NJ)
  • Darrell Issa (CA)
  • Dana Rohrabacher (CA)
  • Tom McClintock (CA)
  • Walter Jones (NC)

Most of them came from high-tax states, particularly New York and New Jersey. This contingent came from high-tax states and didn't like the idea that the bill limits the deductibility of state and local taxes. That's a problem in high-tax states, where the deduction has essentially served as a federal subsidy for the big-spending ways of Albany and Trenton politicians.

Now the politicians in those states are going to have to explain to their constituents why they're feeling the pinch for real on their state and local tax returns. That's a good thing. If they want to impose high taxes, taxpayers in the rest of the country shouldn't help them hide the impact of it.

At any rate, this is just the first step in the process. You should remember that from the ObamaCare repeal debacle. We were all pretty excited when the House just barely passed that bill, but in the end it didn't matter because the Senate failed to do what it was elected to do.

Will the same thing happen this time? John McCain is still there, so anything's possible. Senate leadership seems more confident this time that it has the votes. They'd better go ahead and vote while Luther Strange is still a senator, because I'd be surprised if they get two votes out of Alabama after December.

Then comes the work in conference committee to reconcile the two bills, because they are going to have some differences, and then finally both chambers will have to vote to approve the conference report. That's where the Alabama situation could be crucial. If you think back to when ObamaCare first passed, the Democrats had 60 votes in the Senate on the original Senate bill, but between then and the finalization of the conference report, Ted Kennedy died and was replaced by Republican Scott Brown. The loss of that one vote made it impossible to pass the conference report and the only way to pass ObamaCare was for the House to pass the Senate bill with no changes, then have Obama sign it and go back and clean it up under the fraudulent guise of reconciliation later.

It would be a shame of Roy Moore's troubles killed tax reform. This story is just getting started.


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