Senator Bob Corker (R-TN) and Senator Pat Toomey (R-PA), key Republican Senate leaders on the Budget Committee, appear to have reached an agreement on a budget resolution that would allow for tax cuts over a 10 year period. The budget resolution is a critical piece necessary to unlock reconciliation rules to pass tax reform on a simple majority. According to The Hill, the resolution will call for $1.5 trillion in tax cuts.
The agreement between the two members is notable as they are on opposite sides of the Republican policy spectrum. Senator Corker, a deficit hawk, has expressed concern about legislation which increases the deficit. Senator Toomey has pushed for deeper tax cuts. Corker ultimately was convinced that a tax reform package of this magnitude would spur economic growth enough to pay for itself.
“The fact they are coming together leads me to believe we are getting close to a budget that will come out of committee and we can bring to the floor,” said Senator John Thune (R-SD)
The budget resolution will still need to pass the committee and the Senate, and then align with the House version of the legislation. Passage by the House will likely be a more difficult task as a greater percentage of the House is opposed to legislation that will add to the federal deficit.
Maya MacGuineas, president of the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget said, “The president and members of Congress have spent years warning of our large and growing national debt and have said their goal was to pursue tax reform that doesn’t make that debt worse. It is extremely disheartening that the Senate budget may be abandoning that commitment.”
The resolution is expected to be taken up in late September or early October.