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Rep. Kevin Brady: Tax Reform Pays for Itself by Eliminating Loopholes

(MSNBC/"Morning Joe")

By    |   Friday, 03 November 2017 08:40 AM

Republican tax reform efforts will pay for themselves by growing the economy while eliminating special deductions in the current tax codes through a proposed House tax reform bill, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady said Friday.

"We know it will grow the economy in a big way," the Texas Republican told MSNBC's Morning Joe" program. "[It] doesn't just grow revenues in Washington. It does it at the state and local levels, but that's not enough.

"The reason we're going with the simple postcard style approach and eliminating a lot of special provisions on the business side to to get back to a balanced budget over time. You can't do one or the other. We do both."

The only way to deliver lower tax rates is to get rid of loopholes and deductions in the tax code, he added, noting that "you have to do growth and streamline simplify the code."

USA Today senior political correspondent Heidi Przybyla, however, pointed out that the Joint Committee on Taxation's economic model assumes that the tax cuts proposed could drag down economic growth.

"That's not what this bill does," she argued. "These are unfunded. You're taking out some loopholes, but still blowing a big hole in the budget. That's not like they did in 1986."

"There are a number of models on growth," Brady responded. "You make a great point. Tax reform alone won't get us to a balanced budget. We have to have spending constraints along with that, and as I know, House Republicans, we are turning toward on welfare reform and tackling the entitlements in a way to save them."

Economist Steve Rattner, after the Brady interview, argued that the winners in the tax plan are "business and wealthy people," not the middle class," and said the much-publicized end of the estate tax will not benefit anyone but the wealthy.

"Only people who have more than $11 million, die with more than that, pay that estate tax," said Rattner. "When he talks about family farms and small business guys and all that stuff, it's ridiculous. It's an illusion that these are the people who benefit. They don't benefit. They don't pay estate tax."

Further, said Rattner, when it comes to the middle class, under the proposed House bill, it depends on a family's circumstances about whether they will benefit.

"If you're a family of fewer than three kids, you get a little bit of money," Rattner said. "If you're a family of three kids or more, you lose a little bit of money. The high tax states, if you're a high tax state, and 40 percent of the people in places like New York and Connecticut itemize deductions, they'll be losers.

"In the middle class, the best you do is get a few hundred dollars and the worst is lose money. This is not a bill about the middle class taxpayer the way they say it is on every Sunday talk show I watch."

Meanwhile, Brady told Fox News' "Fox & Friends" that the proposed bill is called the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act because it seeks growth, not just lower taxes.

"We really go after all the incentives that are shipping our jobs overseas," the Texas Republican said. "Our goal is not just to stop that, but bring them back."

The tax cuts on the family level and the simplicity of the tax postcard are also important, said Brady, but "we go all in on Main Street, paycheck growth, because we have just fallen so far behind China and Europe and Canada and Mexico. It's killing our local jobs, and the paychecks that go with it."

Brady said he doesn't "believe" anyone's taxes will go up, "mainly because we double the standard deduction, so that preserves more of the first dollars every family earns."

Brady said he also believes taxes will go down even in high-income states, where state and local taxes are now deductible.

"We have been working very closely with those lawmakers," said Brady. "That's why here recently, at the end, working with them, we restored the state and local property tax deduction."

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Republican tax reform efforts will pay for themselves by growing the economy while eliminating special deductions in the current tax codes through a proposed House tax reform bill, Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady said Friday.
kevin brady, GOP, tax reform, loopholes
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2017-40-03
Friday, 03 November 2017 08:40 AM
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